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60001 8642Q 

j» ■'.■■- ■ 







.♦ •• . 












SIMON CASIE cHirrr, modliar. 




jfg^. c\ sC^. 

• • '^x 







Availing myself of your Excellency's kind permission, 
I have the honour of dedicating io you the accompanying 
Gazetteer of the Island of Ceylon, over the interests of which 
you happily preside. Short as has been the period of your 
administration, many are the benefits resulting to the Colony ; 
and you have already earned amongst us a popularity un- 
equalled by any of your predecessors. Accept then this 
unworthy production, as a token of the reverence in which 
your enlightened and liberal government is held, and as an 
humble tribute of the gratitude of an individual for the 
numerous beneficent measures which you have adopted — and 
which we may believe you will continue to do— for ameliorating 
the condition of the natives, and ultimately to raise them 
in the scale of society. 


in the earnest hope that you may be blessed with health 
h ng to continue an administration so happily commenced^ and 
uhen^ in the course of events, you shall return to your na- 
ti\e shores that may you long enjoy the happiness resulting 
from the conviction that you live in the memory of the thou- 
sands whom you have governed and benefited. 

I beg to subscribe myself, with most profound regard. 

Your Excellency's 

Most obedient and humble servant. 


^tiffmUiffif April I| ISdQk 


The Island of Ceylon hus been justly considered one of the 
most important of the foreign possessions subject to Great 
Britain ; and under her humane, just ^ and wise administration, 
it may hereafter become in the south east, what she is in 
the north west, " the queen of isles.'* * 

Various publications have from time to time appeared re- 
garding the situation and extent if this favoured isle, — its 
climate and resources, and the character and condition of its 


inhabitants ; but none of them contains any particular account 
of its topography ; and even where it has been noticed it is 
invariably so much amalgamated with other matters, and 
dispersed through so many pages, that it is not adapted for 
purposes of reference. 

A perusal of Hamtlton's East India Gazetteer, suggested 
to me that this desideratum could be overcome by forming 
a work of a similar kind ; and laving communicated with my 
highly respected friends, the Rev. Benjamin Clough and 
his nephew, the late ATr. Frear, they encouraged me to the 
undertaking, being convinced that it would be a very desirable 

* Philaltttbes. 


vi Prtface4 

and interesting work. They both promised to render me 
every assistance in their power ; but before I ccutd avail 
mysetf of their valuable aid, they returned to England on 
account oj ill health* Under these circumstances, I had resolved 
to relinquish the attempt, despairing of success; but on su'y^ 
mitting a specimen of the plan I meant to adopt to His 
Excelleicy the Governor (ihrough thejavor of Henry Tlf- 
h'Ei L, Esq. his Private Secretary), I received a most gracious 
cowmmncation, expressive of approbation, accompahied with 
an assurance " to rely upon the utmost encouragement and 
assistance which it might be in his power to afford;'' and 
at the same time, was obligingly favoured by iWr. Tufnell 
with copies of some original works from his library, fcr my 
service. Having thus happily found a noble supporter in 
His Excellency, and a valuable friend in his son'in-law, I had 
overcome evety obt^tacle, and therefore determined to persevere 
in the publication of my work; an !, hotwithstanding the nume" 
rous difficulties which a Native has to contend with in English 
composition, I have accom; I shed if, and humbly venture to 
trust it may prove worthy the acceptance of a generous public. 

In the compilation of most of the articles, I have availed 
myself largely of the information contained in the works of 
Knox, Cordiner, Percival, and Davy; and whenever 
I have done so, I have invariably subjoined the name. But 
it will be found that even in such articles a considerable 
portion of the information is entirely new, being extracted fromt 
original native works and traditions. 

Preface. tu 

As I have, for the sake of brevity, omitted to give an enlarg- 
ed detail of the manners and customs of the different castes 
of Natives, I hare appended to this work some Essays on that 
subject lately published by me ; and for one of which, I have 
received t^e thanks of the Royal A^iatit. Society o/Great 
Britain and Ireland^ and also of His Extellency General 
Sir El ward Barn ts. Commander in Chief of India* 

Jt is highly flattering to me to add, that, in the course of 
composition^ I have met with many kind and encouraging 
friends, who have assisted me with valuable suggestions ; 
and among the many, I feel particularly indebted to Geurgb 
TuRNOUR, Ksq., the Revenue Commissioner at Kandy.for his 
critique on some of the articles relating to the history of 
the ancient capitals, and which he was highly competent 
to offer from his profound knowledge of the Pali literature. 

It would be the height of ingratitude, were I on this occasion 
to omit expressing my grateful thanks to the Lady of Cap' 
tain Isaac Foster of the i eyion Rifles, and the Rev. RoBkRr 
Spence Hardy; but mure particularly to the former, who 
has long proved herself friendly to my improvement. The 
valuable assistance which they have afforded me on this, as 
well as on other occasions, and the lively concern which they 
have expressed in my present and future career, must ever 
be regarded by me with gratitude, and prove an incitement to 
further exertion. 

tiii Preface. 

To Francis James Templer, Esg., the Collector and 
Provincial Judge of Chilaw, I also beg to offer my grateful 
thanks:^ his observations on some articles have been most 

Before I conclude my prefatory remarks, 1 feel it necessary 
to intreat the indulgent public generously to make etery 
allowance for any faults in composition which may appear in 
the following work : for I am sensible that 1 cannot stand the 
test of criticism, particularly as it regards my English, a 
knowledge of which language I possess very imperfectly ; but 
as I have never received any systematic education, 1 trust it 
will prove an apology for all errors. For the little theory I 
possess I am solely indebted to the kindness of Cap f an 
Ma ft hew Smith, of H. M \^th Regt , to whom I am happy 
to have this opportunity of returning my grateful acknou)^ 

s. c« c* 


etpUn tSim^tUtt^ 


Adam*s Berg, a hill of considerable size, situated at the 
distance of 6 miles north east of Kahawatte, in the district of 
Matara. It is known amongst the Singhalese by the nam© 
of MulgirigaU and is mentioned in their history as early as the 
time of king Saidaitissa, who reigned at Anooraadhapoora 
from the year 140 to V2i B. ۥ The hill is about 300 feet in 
height, and is ascended by a winding flight of stairs, formed of 
five hundred and forty five steps of hewn stones. On the 
summit, which is circular and level, stands a Ddgoba, and about 
halfway below it are two gloomy Wihares excavated out of the 
rock, close together, and in each of which there is (besides 
several figures of natural size standing in a row) a colossal 
image of Budha, in a recumbent posture, forty five feet in 
length, and of a proportionable breadth, formed of stone. 
(Cor diner.') 

Adam^s Bridge^ a reef of sunken rocks, which extend across 
the gulf of Manaar, from Ramisseram on the coast of Coro- 
mandel, to Talamanaar on the coast of Ceylon. It exhibits 
dvident marks of the Island having been once united with the 
continent, — separated, in all probability, by some convulsion of 
nature. The natives however, who call it ^^ Tiroowanai," or the 
sacred embankment, and '^ Seetoopandanam/* or the structure 
of Seetoo (which is one of the classical names of Ramisseram), 
perstiade themselves, that it is the remains of a bridge con- 
structed by Rama, the king of " Ayodhya,*' for passing over 
with his army to the Island, in the war he waged with Ra- 
tana, for the recovery of his consort Sita. Valmika, in his 
Uttara kdnda, cap. xviii.^ describes the bridge as being ten 

2 Tlie Ceylon Gazetteer. {A D IL 

yojens in breadth, and one hundred in Ieilfi;tb, and composed 
of no other materials than hage rocks, piled up in a chain by 
the Vdriaras, under the direction of Nala, one of the chief 
engineers of the gods. The situation of these rocks rendering 
the passage often dangerous for vessels, the British govern- 
ment employed people to remove them ; but the result has been 
jinsuccessful. « 

Adam's Peak, one of the loftiest mountains in Ceylon, re- 
markable for the high veneration in which it is held by the 
natives, on account of the impression of a human footstep 
which is found on its summit. Its perpendicular height has 
been estimated at 7150 feet, and it stands in the Saffragam 
district in 7 ° 6' north latitude, and 80 ° 43' east longitude, 
about 71 miles south east of Colombo. Though the summit 
appears like a point, viewing it from the bottom of the plain^ 
yet it embraces an area of 74 feet In length, and 24 in breadth ; 
and on a large flat stone, which stands in the centre, surround- 
ed by a wall of five feet high, the devotees discover the sacred 
footstep, which, according to Dr. Davy, is " a superficial hol- 
low, five feet three inches and three quarters long, and between 
two feet seven inches, and two feet five inches wide." Pilgrims 
from the most remote parts of India, of every religion, visit 
the Peak, and ascend by means of an iron chain which is 
fastened to it. The Fakeers of the Mahomedan persuasion, in 
order to excite the zeal of their benefactors, often take impres- 
sions of the footstep on a piece of white cloth (which has been 
previously coated with pulverized sander) for public exhibition. 
Respecting the footstep, there is a diversity of opinions. The 
Moors, who will have Ceylon to be the place whither the first 
man was expelled after his fall, ascribe it to him ; and the 
Hindoos claim it for Siva (the third person in their triad); but 
the Budhists loudly protest against this opinion, and assert it 
to belong to Budiia. It is called ^' Baha-Aadamalei " by the 
Moors; "Samanella sripada," or "Samantakoota parvata" by 
the Singhalese ; ^ Amaia saripadi " by the Burmese ; and 
^* Sivanolipadam'' by the Mahbars; eaeh, and ail of tbese^ 

[AHA The Ceylon Gazetteer. 8 

having a reference to the religions persuasion of the people. 
Mons. Be La Louberb^ Envoy extraordinary to the king 
of Siam from the court of Louis XIV.7 affirms, that the people 
of that country have also a similiar impression of a foot on 
one of the hills there, which represents the right foot of their 
Summonagodom/' while the one we are describing/ is the left 
of the same personage. 

According to a note appended to the article ^* Ape," in 
Calmet's Dictionary, here there was formerly a very magni- 
ficent temple, in which there was, among other things, a littlo 
box full of gold and jewels, containing also an ape's tooth ; 
the latter, the Portuguese are said to have taken when they 
ravaged the Island in 1554, when they burnt the relic, and had 
the ashes thrown into the sea, though the kings of the country, 
who worshipped it, offered 700,000 ducats for it. At present 
the Peak is not ornamented with any splendid edifices : it has 
only a small IVihare, in which the priest who is employed to 
collect the offerings for the priory of Malwatte resides* 

Adikaripattoo, a division of the province of Hewagam Korle, 
in the district of Colombo, which contained in 1814^ 17 village^ 
and 3275 inhabitants. 

Adikaripattoo, a division of the province of Ray gam Korle^ 
in the district of Caltura. It possesses a soil well calculated 
for the culture of paddy, and contained in 1814, 36 villages^ 
and 4I4G inhabitants. ^ 

Adikaripattoo, a division of the province of Hina Korle, in 
tKe district of Colombo, which contained in 1814, 26 village^ 
and 957U inhabitants. 

Ahangamme, (yahangama, the bed village) a village of Telpe- 
pattoo, in the district of Galle, supposed to have received its 
name from the circumstance of the king Kumara Daa^ 
taking a nap there, when on his tour through that part of th# 
country. It is of soipe'size,. and in an elevated, pleasant 
«LtMtion» and contains ^ great number of houis#s withia tti«^ 

4 !%• C4yUm Gazetteer. [ A K K 

compasji of a mile : bat it is chiefly remarkable for a Wihare, 
which stands on the top of a hill. (Missionary report) 

Aitgalle, a villafife situated on the old road to Trincomalee, 
7 miles north east of Kandy. Shortly after the conquest of 
Kandy, the British government formed a military post at this 
village ; the beautiful and extensive views of the surrounding 
country which it commanded^ rendered it a most delightful 
station. In May 1818, it was attacked by about 300 rebels^ 
armed with firelocks and headed by Amanagama Dissavb^ 
but they were soon driven away by Lieutenant Lewis, who 
then commanded the garrison, without any loss on his side. 
(Ceylon Gazette.) 

Akeria, a village 10 or 12 miles from Passera, the road from 
which lies along the course of the Logal Oya, between stefip 
and rocky mountains, Tn January 1816, the Pretender, with 
the rebel Dissave Pilimi Talawa, took up his position at 
this village ; but on the approach of Major M acdonald with 
a detachment from Passera, he quitted the place, and betook 
himself to his jungle haunt* 

Akkarapattoo, a province of Batticalo, stretching along its 
sooth east coast ; bounded on the east by the sea, on the west 
by Nddukddoo, on the south by Panoa, and on the north by 
Sammantorr6, In length it may be estimated at about lOmiles, 
by 4 to 7 broad, comprehending fourteen villages. The soil of 
this province is composed of marl, and some sand of dark 
colour ; and in general appearance it exhibits a succession of 
high jungles and large plains, intersected by salt and fresh 
water lakes, and ornamented at intervals with rich paddy 
fields. The inhabitants are Malabars, and on the whole very 
industrious and peaceable* 

Akkarapattoo, one of the divisions of the district of Putlamv 
Improperly denominated in the maps Navacarre. It extendi 
along the peninsala of Calpentyn from Madikettan Ode to- 
Odepenkarre ; is about 39 miles in length, and 5i at ita greatest 

A L A] The CeyUm Oattltter. ^ 5 

breadth. It comprehends 42 villages, and the number of 
inhabitants in 1831, was reckoned at 5666, in the proportion of 
one Malabar to ten Moors. Though the soil is generally sandy, 
cocoanat trees thrive exceedingly well, and the whole tract 
which borders the gulf appears, as it were, almost corered with 
that most useful tree. In the southern parts there are large 
plats of paddy land, but as only a very small portion has been 
subjected to the plough, the annual produce seldom averages 
more than 7000 parraA^. Tobacco is raised every where and in 
large quantities, and the high lands are sown with a variety of 
fine grains, amongst which Corakan has been found essentially 
useful in furnishing subsistence to the poorer classes. Cinna- 
mon grows wild, mixed with other jungle trees, in the neighbour- 
hood of Toduway, but in consequence of its inferior quality, 
compared with that of the Singhalese districts, it has not 
attracted the notice of the peelers. It possesses a larg« 
manufactory of salt^ and supplies government with a consider* 
able quantity of that article for shipment to Colombo, and 
other parts. The salt pans are the property of private indi- 
viduals, who are remunerated for the salt by government at 
the rate of one fanam per parrah^ which is however an 
inadequate compensation for the trouble they undergo in 
manufacturing it. In 183 1 there were in this province 5805 
homed cattle, and 2180 goats; the dairy is entirely managed 
by women, and the produce is transported to the marketa 
of Colombo. 


Alambel, a village 8 miles north of Mullativoe, on the right 
side of the road leading to Trincomalee. It has a rest house 
facing a beautiful plain, enlivened with constant verdure, and 
watered by two tanks. There is here a Romish church, and 
close by it a well which affords excellent water. Near to this 
village is a salt lake ; the hills running along its western shores 
have a very picturesque appearance. Several branches of this 
lake intersect the road in different places, and though not 
deep are, on account of the blue clay at the bottom, dangerauK 
fcr hoiuM and cattle to ^ross. 

6 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [ALU 

Alauwiy a village on the banks of the Maha oya, on the road 
from Colombo to Kandy by Karnnagalle, about IG miles east of 
the latter place. It is supposed to have been formerly a place 
of great consideration and the seat of a king, and on that 
account the natives still frequently call it Alauwi Nuwera. 
The rest house for the accommodation of travellers stands on 
the left side of the river, and has a post office attached to it. 

Allaputty, (Allepitty) a small island off Jaffna, opposite 
to the village of Wanndrpannfe, having 1760 inhabitants. It 
has a loose sandy soil, and yields only a very small proportion 
of paddy ; but palmyra trees abouud every \ihere. The in- 
habitants are Malabars, and profess the Siva religion without 
a single exception. Fish is caught plentifully on the coasts 
and when dried, forms an article oi export to Jaffna. 

Allipoot, (Allupotta) a military post, and station of i\\% 
officer commanding Lower Uwa and Welasse, having a popu- 
lous neighbourhood, with extensive plats of paddy land in 
a state of culture. The fort stands on a hill, commanding 
on cnie side a view of the lofty mountain chain of which 
Naminikulakanda is the summit, and on the other of the 
wooded hills and flats of the country. In the vicinity of 
this station, green earth is found in small veins and imbedded 
in masses of clay, derived from th« decomposition of a granite 
rock. Near the path on the way to Kattabowa, about 1061 feet 
above the level of the sea, is a warm spring, the temperature of 
which was ascertained to be &0* 5*. (Davy.) 

Alutgama, (new village) a village on the right bank of 
the Bentotte river, directly opposite to the town of that name> 
12 miles south from Caltura. 

Alutkoor Korle, a province of Colombo, situated on the north 
west coast; bounded on the east by Hapitigam Korle and 
Hina Korle, on the south by the Kalani ganga, and on the 
north by the Kaymil, which separates it from Cbilaw. It is 
one of the healthiest provinces in the Island, sctkd with regard 

A MB] The Geyldn Gazetteer. 7 

to its vegetable luxuriance^ it may indeed justly deserve to be 
called ^^ a garden of beauty and delight" It produces^ besides 
cinnamon and cocoanuts, betel, areka nuts, coffee, black 
pepper, jambu, cashew, and an immense variety of other fruit 
trees, shrubs, and flowers. Paddy is also raised in large 
quantities, nor is the province deficient in fine grain* Fish 
is caught in great abundance, by all sorts of contrivance> 
both in the lake and the sea ; and a considerable trade, both in 
dried fish and other products of the country, is carried on with 
the interior. It has no manufactures of salt, but depends 
on supplies from Putlam ; and the trade consists of cordage^ 
jaggery, earthenware, tiles and bricks. 

This province is said to have been originally peopled in 
the time of king 6a J A Bahoo I. by a portion of the captives 
be had brought from the coast of Goromandel ; and it reckoned 
in 1814, 4^9,645 inhabitants^ the greatest proportion of whom 
are fishers, and though thQy have adopted the costume of 
the Singhalese, yet retain to this day most of the habits of their 
Malabar progenitors. 

Alutnuwera, (new city) a village in the province of Saffra- 
gam, on the road from Colombo to Badulla, by Avisahavel^ 
and Ratnapura, about 7 miles east of Ballangodde. It was 
occupied by the British government as a military post during 
the eventful period of the rebellion, but has been since aban- 
doned. Here there is a large Hindoo temple of a very ancient 
date^ and a small Wihare, with a Dagoba of some size within 
the same enclosure. It has very good water springs, and 
the surrounding country affords excellent pasturage for cattle* 

Aiutnuwera^ a village in the province of Bintenne, situated 
to the north east of Kandy. It was once the site of a town 
famous for having given birth to Raja Singha 11., the Nero 
of Ceylon, who reigned in the time of Knox. 

Ambalam, a village and post station, situated on the side of 
a IsMTge plain, 6 miles north of Putlam, and at some distance 
from the mouth' of Velukkyaar. It has but few inhabitantg. 

6 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [AAfU 

livhose dwellings consist of small mud cottages covered with 
straw. Paddy was formerly raised here^ but has of iate been 
neglected on account of the long continued droughts. In the 
forest in the neighbourhood^ which afibrds shelter to almost 
every sort of wild quadruped, a species of white deer seems to 
exist ; three of that kind were caught» the last one in 1822, but 
all efforts to keep them alive have proved abortive. 

Ambaposse, a village on the road to Kandy, about 37 miles 
east of Colombo. Here there is a bridge to be crossed, and 
about a mile from it is situated the Royal Hotel of Maha- 
Haine, established in January 1832, which affords comfortable 
acconunodation for travellers. 

Ambigamuwa, (Ambagama) a village in the lower Bulat* 
gamme, elevated about 1600 feet above the level of the sea, and 
in every direction encompassed by hills. It was once occupied 
by the British government as a military post during the 
rebellion, but subsequently abandoned. It suffered much in 
the desultory warfare at the period alluded to, and was 
almost deserted ; but since the restoration of tranquillity it has 
gradually recovered, and possesses at present a tolerably 
numerous population, by whom a considerable tract of ground 
is cultivated. (Davy.) 

Amblangodde, a considerable village, rest house, and post 
station^ about 15 miles south of Bentotte, and 19 north of 
CieUe. It has a great number of houses covered with tiles^ 
aed is larger than most of the villages in this part of the 
country, and was once the station of a magistrate. The inha- 
bitants are exclusively fishermen, and a great portion of them 
are engaged in a coasting trade between the Island and the 
coast of Goromandel. Here there is a remarkably splendid 
Wihare^ as well as a school belonging to the Wesleyan 

Amunapura, once a military post of considerable importance^ 
fs situated in the old road from Colombo to Kandy, about II 

A N £] The Ceylen Gazetteer. g 

miles south west of fort King. The fort, which is still in 
preservation, stands on the summit of a steep hill, which rises 
2000 feet above the level of the sea, and from which the view 
is as beautiful as it is extensive. Below the hill was stationed 
a cantonment and a convalescent hospital, both of which have 
been since abandoned. Contig:uous to them is a large village 
full of people, with a good bazar. (Davy, J 

Analativoe, a small island on the west of Jaffna, formerly 
known by the name of Donna Clara, from a certain lady who 
resided there, and was mistress of it in the time of the Portu- 
guese. In the charts it has been called Rotterdam. It con- 
tained in 1814, 1148 inhabitants; but, according to the census 
of 1831, the number appears to have been reduced to 995: 
perhaps from the cholera morbus, which was making here, 
as well as in the neighbouring island, very considerable ravages. 
The soil is sandy, but productive in palmyra trees, plantains^ 
and cotton, which latter is largely cultivated. 

Andipane, a rest house and post station, 12 miles north of 
Chilaw, on the road to Putlam, and close to the sea shore; 
remarkable only for an old pagoda, vaulted at the top and 
surmounted with a dome, which is sacred to Parvati in her 
character of Maari Ammen,'^ or goddess of destruction. 

Anewulundanpattoo, a small province of Chilaw, bounded 
on the east and south by Monisserampattoo ; on the north by 
the Quiparawa lake ; and on the west by the gulf of Manaar. 
Its extreme length is 1 6 miles, and the breadth varies from 
half a mile to 9 miles. It is on the whole badly cultivated : 
and its productions consist of paddy, fine grain, and tobacco ; 
while the manufactures are chiefly confined to salt and 
earthenware. The inhabitants amount to 29^5, of whom one 
fifth are Malabars, and the remainder Singhalese. 

Anetivoe, (the Elephant's island) a small village and rest 
house^ situated on the side of a plain, in the road from Trinco- 
aalee to Batticalo, at the distanco of two miles and a half 


10 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [A N O 

from the place ivhere the Vergel ganga disembogues its paters 
into the sea. It contains nothing worthy * of notice, except 
a little pool ; which affords a seasonable relief to the exhausted 
traveller in this part of the country^ where good water is 
extremely scarce. (Cordiuer.) 

Annatnalle, (the Swan's hill) a village of Sammantorre, in the 
district of Batticalo, situated inland about 3 miles west from 
the sea, and 32 north west of Arrookgam. It has a water 
communication with Batticalo, by means of the lake which 
extends from Naypattimoon^ to that place. The inhabitants 
are few ; but it possesses many well cultivated paddy fields, 
interspersed with cocoanut trees, which give it a charming 

Annatewamadoo, a village on the road from Trincomalee to 
Vertaltivoe, through Wanny, about 77 miles west from the 
former, and .38 east from the latter. It is situated in the 
centre of an extensive plain of paddy fields tolerably well 
cultivated, and bordered by a variety of beautiful trees and 
shrubs. Here there was formerly a rest house, which furnished 
comfortable accommodation to travellers in the midst of a 
country infested with wild animals. (Cordiner.) 


Anooraadliapoora, one of the most renowned cities of anti- 
quity, supposed to have been the Anurogrammum of Ptolom Y 
(lib. vii. 2), now in ruins, is situated in the province of Nuwera- 
kalawe, 53 miles south east of Arrippo, and 92 north of Kandy. 
Mr. Knox, who calls it Anurodgburro, favors the vulgar 
opinion that the name was derived from the circumstance of 
ninety kings having successively reigned at the place ; but 
according to the account given in the Maha Wanse, which is 
far more authentic, Anooraadhapoora (vulgarly called Anu- 
rajahpoora) is only a corruption of Anur&dhapura, the original 
appellation bestowed on it, after the cognomen of its founder 
Anuradha Sekya Kum\raya, one of the six princes who 
settled from the opposite coast in the time of Pan du was A, 
third king of the island^ who reigned from the year 504 to 

[A N O The Ceylon Gazetteer. 11 

474 B.C. Pandukabhaya during his reig:n, which lasted 
from the year 437 to 367^ made Anooraadhapoora the -seat 
of government ; greatly ^embellished it, and added largely to 
the convenienee of its inhabitants by constracting two very 
exten'si^ tanks, called Jayawewa and Abayawewa, and 
also by forming many amunas of paddy lands for the support 
of the temple. In the first year of the reign of Deve'nipea- 
TISSA, which commenced in 806, D(IARMASooka, who swayed 
the sceptre of Dambadiva, was induced to depute his son 
MiHiNDOo and his daughter Sangamitta, with several 
other principal priests, to Anooraadhapoora, for the purpose . 
of introducing the religion of Budha ; and they brought with 
them the Sri Maha B6di tree, which they planted tberci and 
which is regarded as an object of high veneration by the 
votaries of Budha, from the story of its having afforded him a 
delightful shade to repose under, while he was labouring on 
the earth. During the government of Asrla, who ascended the 
throne in'the year 214, a Malabar chieftain, named Ellala, 
came over from the Coromandel coast and took possession of 
the Island : he made Anooraadhapoora the capital of his con- 
quests; and being a staunch professor of the Siva religion, 
endeavoured to supplant the worship of Budha, and compelled 
the inhabitants to conform to his own creed. Ella la governed 
the country with great pomp and splendour for forty years, 
until the accession of Dootoogaimoonoo to the throne of 
Roohoona, in whom he met with a formidable foe ; and in the 
protracted war with him, was ultimately killed in the year 164. 
Thus Dootoogaimoonoo having completely reconquered the 
country, restored the worship of Budha and his sacred trc^e, 
and erected many superb temples and D^obas (besides the 
Lowa-maha-paaya ) in the place, to adorn it. From this 
I>eriod to the commencement of the reign of Walagambahoo 
I., in the year 104, Anooraadhapoora remained in the hands of 
the Singhalese; but soon afterwards seven Malabars from the 
Coromandel coast effected a landing on the Island, and driving 
the king from the seat of government, reduced Anooraadhapoora 
ID their yoke. Five of them retained possession of it for a 

12 ne Ceyhn Gazetteer. [ A N O 

period of fourteen years» when tbey were defeated by the 
forces of the deposed monarch, and compelled to surrender all 
the conquests they had made. The successors of Walagam- 
RAiioo, seem to have vied with each other in improving the 
sacred ediBces belonging to Anooraadhapoora; and their atten* 
tion was particularly directed to the embellishment of the 
iMwa-mdhOrpaaya. Among those who were most forward, the 
Singhalese accounts mention Batiyatissa, or Bhatik.a- 
BHAYA, with much panegyric. In the reign of Mahasbn, 
who came to the throne in the year A.D. 275, a furious schism 
broke out, in consequence of the king adopting the doctrines 
of Wytoolia ; and it rose to such a pitch, that he was led 
to demolish the Lowa-maha-paaya and 363 other principal 
temples, and to plough up the very site of them. But he was 
subsequently brought to a sense of his impiety, and repaired 
and restored most of these buildings; and Anooraadhapoora 
continued to be the capital of his successors till the year 434, 
when the Malabars again invaded it, and kept possession 
until they were expelled by Dhatu Sena, in the year 459. 
It is affirmed, that from the time of his successor Kasyappa 
I., Seegirigalla, a hill fort and almost inaccessible position 
in another part of Nuwerakalawe, became occasionally the 
seat of government during times of commotions ; but we do 
not find Anooraadhapoora finally abandoned till the year 769, 
when it gradually sunk into obscurity. 

Anooraadhapoora, with reference to its ruins, may be justly 
styled the Palmyra of Ceylon : and, as Knox has observed, the 
ancient inhabitants " spared not for pains and labour to build 
temples and high mountains to the honor of their god; as if they 
had been born only to hew rocks and great stones, and lay them 
up in heaps" Among these ruins, the most conspicuous is 
that of the Lowa-^naha-paaya, which " consists of 1600 stone 
pillars, forming nearly a square of 40 on each side ; the length 
of these pillars appears once to have been equal, and even 
now they only differ by a few inches. They are generally 
eleven feet in height, and those in the centre, comers, and 
gateway (in the centre of the front of the building), two feeb 

A N O] Tfie Gey ton Gazetteer. 13 

square. The rows of pillars are parallel, and at right angles to 
each other, but are not equidistant The distance between Hxe 
rows varies from 2i to ;)| feet The priests, from ancient 
writings, state, that these pillars once formed the basement of 
a structure of nine stories. Without going so far, it is reason- 
able to imagine that these pillars were built upon. If they 
had merely supported a roof, the rooms would have been of the 
most paltry dimensions, and light would have been nearly 
excluded, except from the outer apartments. Most of these 
pillars are still standing, but they have not been so carefully 
chiselled or squared as the pillars scattered in- their vicinity/' 
(Colombo Journal, No. 92) The true Sri Maha B6di tree, before 
mentioned, became extinct long ago; but the Singhalese 
devotees, attempt to impose on the public that the one whicb 
now stands on the spot, is the same which sheltered their 
BuDHA. At the base of this tree a large square moun() 
is raised with bricks, gradually tapering from the bottom to 
the top, in which steps are formed, and it is enclosed by a 
wall. To the north of the Lowa maha-paaya, at various 
distances within a mile, are six DAgobas, — ( of which the 
Jaitwanaaraamaya, the largest of all built by King Maha 
Sen, is estimated to be, in its present dilapidated state^ 
269 feet high, and 45(>,071 in solid contents), intersected 
with a vast number of Boga trees; which, while they afford 
a cooling umbrage to pilgrims from the scorching heat of 
the sun, add very much to the picturesque majesty of the 
place. Close by the Sri Maha Bodi, and adjoining the Lowa* 
maha-paaya, stands the MaJia Wthare, inclosed by a wall 
forming a rectangle of 115 yards by 72, and the Pansalle, 
or monastery, in which the priests attached to the temple 
reside. In the month of May, in every year, an immense 
concourse of people resort to the place and perform poojaj, 
and distribute alms to the priests in honour of Budha and 
his hallowed tree. 

In 1818, Pblimb Talawb, one of the rebel chiefs, took 

«p his position at Anooraadhapoora, and made preparations to 

. «awA a Mi^abar, named Yira Bahoo^ as king^ in the 

6 2 

14 TheC^^Um Gatetieer. [A R R 

room of th6 Pretender, whom he had deserted; bat on the 
approach of the British troops he left the place and retired* 
towards Pntlam, leaving the new candidate for the throne 
a prisoner in their hands, 

Arranderre, a village and post station on the road from 
Avisahavil6 to Ballapann6, about 13 miles east of Ruangwene^ 
occupied by the British government as a military post during 
the rebellion. Here are still the visible remains of a fort, 
supposed to be the one mentioned by Knox as having been 
built by the Dutch in \iiii6, and four years afterwards taken, 
together with the garrison, by Raja Singha II. 

Arrippo, (a sieve) a small town on the gulf of Manaar, 
in S* 47> north latitude, and 7lr 10' east lons:itude. It is called 
Arrepa by Knox, and is memorable as the first place at which 
this unfortunate man arrived on the coast, after his escape from 
a nineteen years' captivity among the mountains of Kandy. 
It derives its name probably from the sifting for pearls, which 
is carried on there. Here there is a fort, which has two 
bastions, one house of two stories, and some lower houses ; 
but it never possessed either strength or consequence. On 
an elevated bank near the sea shore stands a large house 
erected by the late Earl of Guilford, commonly called the 
Doric, from the front being of that order of architecture. 
During the period of the pearl fishery off Condachy, it is 
the residence of the Governor, if he visits thie place. At a 
small distance towards the north is the village, which contains 
about 150 inhabitants, composed chiefly of fishermen ; and 
a Roman Catholic church, where the divers and others of 
the same communion, who are assembled at Condachy during 
the fishery, resort to hear mass on* Sundays, and other holy- 
days which may intervene. 

Arrippo, a small river which falls into the sea in the 
neighbourhood of the above village, called also Arivi aar. It 
rises in the interior, and traversing north west through Na- 
werc^alawe^ enters the Uaiits of Manaatau by tho Giaote' 

AVIJI The CeyUm Clazetteer* t§ 

tank^ ^li€Dee it turns due west, and rans down to the coast. 
In the bed and banks of this river the inhabitants at times 
collect a species of red and blue stones by sifting the sand> 
and these are well known by the name of Manaar stones, 
which pay a duty of 9s. per 100 when exported beyond 
the Island. 

Arrookgam, a large and populous village, about 64 miles east 
of Batticalo, situated on the bay of the same name, and 
encompassed on the land side by thick jungles, the resort of atl 
sorts of game. It was once occupied by the Dutch government 
as a military post, and had a small mud fort ; but now there is 
only a large store house, in which the paddy tithes collected in 
this part of the country are deposited. 

Arrookgam Aar^ a small river which has its source in 
Passera, and after an easterly course quite across the province 
of Panoa, discharges itself into the sea on the south side of 
the preceding village. 

Atchankulam, a village of some size, and the residence of 
Ratn A Singh A, late Adigar of Manaar. It is situated in the 
province of Nanaatan, about 6 miles from Arrippo,and contains 
large plats of paddy land, as also extensive pasture grounds 
for feeding cattle, of which there are great numbers. 

AtchuweUy, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Waligam, adjoining to Myletty. Its soil is extremely fertile, 
and, on the whole, well cultivated ; while the woods abound 
with hares, deer, and wild boars. The inhabitants amount 
to 20*^7 ; of whom a certain class, not unlike the gypsies in 
England, lead a strolling life, and impose on the credulity 
of the people by telling fortunes. 

AvisahaviU, (Avissawelle) a village on a branch of the 
Kalani ganga, which was the boundary of the British and 
Kandyan territories, separating the Hawagam from the Three 
Korles. It is 29 miles east from Colombo, and has a most 
inwuitic appearance^ from being situated almost at tl|e foot 

18 The Ceylon Gazetteer. fB A B 

as a barrier between that province and Yattinuwera, It is 
nearly perpendicalar, and rises 3000 feet above tlie level of 
the sea. (Davy.) 

Bambimodu, ( Wambeemody) a village on the road to Tan- 
galle, about 35 miles south east of Batticalo. It belongs 
to the Tanakaras^ a class of people whose sole occupation 
consists in planting tobacco^ which thrives tolerably well« 

Bandarakoswatta, (the King's Jack tree grove) a village in 
the Seven Korles, about 85 miles north west of Kandy ; so 
called from its having been once the appanage belonging 
fo the royal family. It was here that Knox and his father 
were placed in captivity, and the remains of the latter were 

BangaUe, (Vankdle) a village in the province of Mantotte, 
situated on a sandy beach near the sea, 8 miles north of 
Arrippo, and 6 south east of Manaar. It has a Romish church 
built of stone, surrounded by a low mud wall, which the priest, 
who officiates in the province, generally makes his station. 
The inhabitants are few in number, and pursue scarcely any 
other occupation besides fishing. The Colombo road branches 
off here into two directions, one leading to Manaar, and 
the other to Jaffna. 

Barbareen, (Beruwala) a small town on the sea coast, in 
the district of Caltura, with a sort of harbour formed by a 
projection of land, where the river runs into the sea. Latitude 
6* 33« north, longitude ?})• 65* east. The word ruwala, in Sin- 
ghalese, signifies a sail ; and is supposed to have been bestowed 
on the place from the circumstance of a certain king having ♦ 
lowered his sail, and effected a landing here. It contains a 
large proportion of tiled houses, and the majority of its 
inhabitants are Moors. It is a port of entry and export, 
and was formerly the station of a magistrate. It abounds in 
cocoanut trees^ and their produce forms the principal article 
•f •ommerce. Cordage of every description i^ made here ; 

BAT] ne Ceylon Gazetteet: i§ 

and the manufacture of iron works is considerable. Here 
there is a neat rest house for travellers^ distant from Caltura 3i 
miles, and from Bentotte 8 miles. 


Batticalo, a large district on the north east coast, extending; 
from the Kumukan aar to the Vergel ganga, a distance of 
nearly 150 miles from south to north. It is better known 
to the natives by the name of Mattakalappoo, from the Sin- 
ghalese words mada muddy, and kalappoo a lake, probably 
from the large lake which runs through it. It is divided 
into ten provinces, viz., Manmoon^, Porative, Eruwil, Karre- 
wahoo, Sammantorr6, Nadukadoo, Akkarapattoo, P4naha» 
Erdoor, and Korlepattoo, and comprises a surface of 136(1 
square miles, with a population of 27,574; of whom 8833 are 
employed in agriculture, 351 in manufactures, and 4927 in 
commerce. The climate is generally salubrious, and except 
during the hot months, (when the thermometer sometimes 
stands at 94* in the shade) cooler than any other part of the 
sea coasts. The face of the country to the southward, from 
Kumukan to Eraoor, is variegated with huge masses of rocks, 
high jungles, salt and fresh water lakes, and large plains 
in the course of tillage ; but to the northward, from Nalloor 
to the Vergel ganga, the scene changes into sandy plains, with 
a few exceptions uncultivated and barren, surrounded by 
jungles on every side, and intersected by salt water lakes. The 
soil towards the south is of marl, and sand of a dark color ; 
but on the north generally loose, and sandy. The forests 
yield a vast quantity of excellent timber, amongst which satin 
wood and ebony are occasionally felled and exported by 
private merchants to Madras. With regard to its agricultural 
^ resources, it produces a sufficient quantity of paddy for 
the consumption of the inhabitants, and abounds with cocoa- 
nut, palmyra, mango, and other fruit trees peculiar to the 
Island, besides an infinite variety of fine grain. It possesses 
a large breed of homed cattle, sheep, and goats ; and the 
jungles afibrd all sorts of game, while its numerous lake^ 
and river3 yield a plentiful supply of fish. 

so Tke CeyUm Gazetteer. [BAT 

The inhabitants are chiefly Malabars^ and for the most 
part heathens. Surgeon Rbbdbr^ who made a tour tfaroogh 
the district in 1801, bears high testimony to their ** hospitality 
and attention;'* while Mr. Cordi>(BR remarks, that ** trau'^ 
quilltty, plenty, and contentment, reign among them ; and they 
feel no desire to leave the spot where they loere homy 

The Wesleyan Missionaries have a respectable establish- 
ment in the district. They have opened six schools in the 
different parts for the instruction of the natives. 

This district was always a point of dispute between the 
king of Kdndy and the Dutch ; but the latter rendered them- 
selves sole masters of it in 1785, and retained possession until 
the* Island was ceded to the British in 1795. During the 
desultory warfare carried on between the Kandyans and the 
Brirish in 1803, a large body of Kandyans penetrated into 
the district, and being joined by a great proportion of the 
inhabitants, established themselves in different positions. 
Joseph Smith, Esq., the then agent of revenue, conducted 
a successful expedition against them on the 3d of September 
of the same year, killed eight of the insurgents, and dispersed 
the others; but the Kandyans maintained their ground for 
nearly two months, until they were driven to the frontiers 
by Lieut. Arthur Johnston of the 19th regiment. (Cordiner.) 

Batticalo, the chief town, and seat of the collector and 
provincial judge of the preceding district, is situated on an 
island 7« 45' north latitude, and 81' 50* east longitude. It is 
about three miles and a half in circumference, and is called by 
the natives Puliantive. The lake, or arm of the sea by which 
it is insulated, extends from the village of Nayapattimoone, 
and is navigable for the country boats. It has a small square 
fort, built of coral stones, in which there is only a low barrack, 
a granary, a magazine, and a dwelling house for the command- 
ant. The collector's house lies without the fort; and the 
village stands a few hundred yards from it, almost embosomed 
in topes of coooanut trees. Though the streets cannot boast of 
regularity, nor the houses of grandeur or neatness, stil^ tb« 

BAT] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 01 

whole presents a tolerably good appearance, and is chiefly 

occupied by Dutch burghers and natiTes- It has one protes- 

tant churchy and two Bomish churches; and the Mahome* 

•dans and heathens have also their respective places of worship. 

This town is memorable in the history of Ceylon as being 
the first port visited by the Dutch, on their first voyage to 
the Island. Admiral Spilbbrgen arrived here on the V9th 
of May 1602 ; and having experienced a favorable reception 
from the chieftain of the place, repaired to the court of 
Kandy, and by his sagacious conduct and discretion laid 
the original foundation of the political power of hiS nation in 
Ceylon. In 1622 the Portuguese erected a fort at Batticalo, 
to protect that part of the coast from the invasion of the 
Dutch; but the latter attacked and obtained possession in 

Batticotta, (Vattukotti) a village and parish of Jafina, in 
the province of Waligam, situated along the coast, having 
6841 inhabitants, who are, without a single exception, com- 
posed of Malabars. The soil is in general arid ; but remarkably 
fertile, and afibrds abundant crops of paddy and fine grain. 
Palmyra grows every where, and often interspersed with mango 

The village is of no consideration except for its splendid 
Seminary established by the American Missionaries, who have 
besides made it their principal station. Their dwellings stand 
close by the salt water river, and the Ottley Hall, (so called in 
compliment to Sir Richard Ottlby, one of its noble 
supporters) in which the annual examination of the students 
takes place, is a handsome structure, and commands a charm- 
ing prospect. In the Seminary none but native youths are 
admitted ; and the progress which some of them have already 
made in mathematics, and in other branches of useful know- 
ledge, does great credit to those under whose management 
the noble institution is placed. Here is likewise a Bible Asso- 
ciation^ which meets quarterly. 

32 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [BEN 

Batfugedera, a village in the province of Saffragram, 57 miles 
south east of Colombo, and with which it possesses a water 
carriage by the Kalu ganga. It has sei;eral rocky luonntaiDs, 
of a very grand and picturesque appearance, in its neighbour- 
hood ; and was for some years a military post, and the station 
of an officer. 

Battulu Oya, a small river which draws its source from a 
tank at Unalle in the Seven Korles, and after a slow winding 
course through Dcmelepattoo, empties itself into the lake of 
Andipane, near Pulichakolam. It swarms with alligators, and 
consequently should be forded with caution. 

Belligam,(^Weligama) a town in the province of the same 
name, situated on a small bay formed by two beautiful points 
of land, enclosing several bare rocks, and two wooded islands. 
It is distant 17 miles north west from JMatura, and 17 south 
east from Galle. The houses are scattered among the cocoanut 
groves ; and the inhabitants, who are composed of Singhalese 
and Moors, obtain their livelihood by fishing, which is carried 
on to a very great extent along the coast. It contains a 
considerable number of religious edifices, among which the 
WiJiare called Aggrabuddhagame, situated on an eminence, is 
most conspicuous, and boasts of a colossal image of Budha 
in a reclining posture. 

At a small distance from the Wihare, overlooking the high 
road, on the opposite side, stands the statue of Kusta Raja, 
sculptured out of a solid rock, of about thirty feet high ; and is 
believed to have been placed here in memory of a king who 
was cured of a leprous distemper. (^Cordiner, M'Kenzie.) 

Bellipettimodere, a considerable village situated on the sea 
coast, about 20 miles from Galle. It is a port of entry and 
export; and carries on a brisk trade in the varied products of 
the cocoanut tree, with which it abounds. It has a court house^ 
and is the station of a magistrate. 

Bentotte, a delightful village in the province of Walallawetty 
l^oile, in the district of Galle^ situated off tbe left bank of the 

BOG] The Ceylon Gazetteer^ 23 

river of the same name, 12 miles south from Caltura. It has 
a large population ; and, like the other Singhalese villages on 
the coast, manufactures considerable quantities of arrack 
and cordage, which is exported to the coast of GoromandeL 
Fish is to be had here in great plenty, and its oysters have 
been celebrated for their exquisite flavor. There is a church 
of considerable size, and a rest house for travellers. 

' Bentotte, a river of Galle which gives name to the above 
village, by the sides of which it falls into the sea, having itft 
source in Hay mountain. 

Biagam, a village of Adikaripattoo in the Hina Korle, 
situated on the east bank of the Kalani ganga. It was once 
the station of a magistrate. Here there is a great number of 
cocoanut gardens; the proprietors of one of them enjoy the 
privilege of levying toll on the passengers who cross over to 
the village. 

Bibligamme, a village in the province of Saffragami^ situated 
about 7 miles to the east of Adam's Peak. Knox, with a little 
variation, calls it Bibligom ; and, according to him, the Dutch 
had a small fort built here, which was afterwards taken 
possession of by the Kandyans together with the garrison. 

Bintenna, a village in the province of the same name^ 
situated on the right bank of the Mahawelli ganga, about 35 
miles in a straight line, almost due east from Kandy^ It was 
once a royal residence; and when the Dutch Admiral Spil- 
BBR6BN arrived therefrom Batticalo in lt>02, he is said to 
have found several beautiful pagodas, and a splendid monaB^ 
tery inhabited by monks, who paraded the streets with spacious 
umbrellas over their heads, and were attended by slaves. In 
1817, when the rebellion broke out, a military post was formed 
at this village, but which has been since abandoned. (PAi/a- 
lethes, Davy.) 

Bogambera, a village in the immediate neighbourhood oif 
Kandy, wliere there was formerly a congregation of Christianf^ 

34 Th€ Ceylon Oazttteer. [B U L 

and a maiEmificcnt chorcb erected by the Portag^ese. At 
present it has nothing worthy of notice, excepting a laka 
called after the same name, which was long used as the place 
of execution for females of distinction, and in which the lady 
of £y HI- LRPo LA was drowned after she had been compelled 
to pound her children in a mortar. (Harvard.) 

Bolawalani, a village of Raagampattoo, in the province of 
Alntkoor Korle^ noted for a Romish church, dedicated to the 
blessed Virgin, which was at one time the resort of a great 
number of pilgrims from the most distant parts of the coantry, 
on account of the miracles said to have been wrought there. 

Bootella, a village of Uwa, situated on the road from Badalla 
to Hambantotte^ 1 1 1 miles from Allipoot, and 30| from Kattra- 
gam. The Ratta RAle of this village was most conspicuoas in 
fomenting the rebellion in 1817, and was concerned in the 
capture and murder of Hadji Mohandiram, who had been 
dent into Welasse for the apprehension of the Pretender set 
up by the rebels. 

Bulaigamme^ two provinces of the same name in the interior; 
of which the one called the Lower is situated adjoining to the 
Three Korles, and the other called the Upper near Udapalata. 
Both are diversified with hills and valleys, and intersected by 
numerous rivers ; and^ on the whole, present rich scenes of 

C A L 

Calpentyn, a town on the west side of the gulf of that name, 
about 9S miles north of Colombo. From being almost surround- 
ed by water, it is often mistaken for an island. It was anciently 
called Arasadi, on account of an Arasu tree (ftcus retigiosa) of 
considerable size, which stood at the spot now occupied by the 
warehouse ; but the natives have since changed it into Kalputti, 
or Kalpetti, from kal a stone^ and putti an elevation. There 
is a small square fort, built by the Dutch in 1646, con- 

G A Lj The Ceykn Gazetteer. 35 

taining several handsome buildings, of which, with the ex- 
ception of one occupied as a commandant's house, and some 
others as stores for salt, arrack, and paddy, and another for a 
prison, the rest are all anroofed, and in ruins. The custom- 
house, and the office of the sitting magistrate, which, together, 
form but one long room, divided by a partition wail, stands 
contiguous to the harbour, in the immediate neighbourhood of 
a jetty, which is nearly decayed. At a small distance from 
the fort is the Pettab, which contains but a very small 
number of large houses roofed with tiles ; yet the immense 
groves of cocoanut trees with which it is stocked, added to the 
rich foliage of the sooria, forming a line on each side of the 
road which leads to the bazar, give it a pretty appearance. 
In the Pettah and its vicinity, there are eight places of wor- 
ship, — one belonging to the protestants, one to the Roman 
catholics, three to the Gentoos, and three to the Maho- 
medans,— >and also a charity schopl supported by government. 
The protestant church, though built of clay and thatched with 
olas, boasts of some antiquity; having stood for nearly two 
centuries, as appears from the date on a tablet placed over 
the grave of a Dutch lady, who was buried in it. 

The harbour, on account of many shoals, is not accessible to 
vessels exceeding 100 tons, even at the highest spring tides, 
so that they are obliged to lie in the Dutch bay at Mutwal, 
and unload and convey their cargoes to Calpentyn in small 
dhonies and ballams, of which there are a great number 
belonging to the place. The exports from Calpentyn to Ma- 
dras, and other ports on the Coromandel coast, are copperahs, 
cocoanuts, oil, sharks' fin, coir rope, honey, bees' wax, ghee, 
fish oil, wood oil, dammer, moss, chaya roots, and palmyra, 
timber ; and the imports consist of cloths, paddy, rice, crock- 
ery, hempen thread, spices, minerals, and drugs. The opening 
of the new canal, between Chilaw and Colombo, has proved 
very beneficial to the inhabitants of Calpentyn, and the trade 
by inland navigation is rapidly advancing. A great number of 
ballams are constantly employed in conveying to the market 
of Colombo copperahs, salt fish, fish rocs, dried shriin^s«^tvc^^% 

26 The Ceylon Gaxtitter. [C A L 

deen' horn, in return for the Chinawarc, English cloth, sugar, 
dates, jackwood planks, tiles, biicks,iron, lead, and a variety 
of other articles iivhich are imported from thence. 

The inhabitants are composed of Malabars, Burghers, Ja- 
vanese, and Moors ; and, according: to the census taken in 1831, 
amount to 2498. Though the soil of Calpentyn is excessively 
sandy, yet it is inferior to few places on the Island, with regard 
to vegetation. In and near the Pettah there are 580 topes 
of cocoanut and palmyra trees; and the gardens, attached 
to the dwellings of several individuals, produce all sorts of 
greens, and various kinds of fruits; as mangos, bananas, 
guavas, papavas, bilimbins, pomegranates, citrons, shaddocks, 
roarmel, and bread fruit. Vines, both of the purple and 
white kind, flourish here in great perfection. The inhabi- 
tants are indebted for their introduction to Major Parava- 
ciNi DU Capelli, while he was Directeur Opprehooid of the 

The fisheries of Calpentyn have greatly increased within the 
last few years, by an influ^c of fishermen from Manaar and 
Negombo. The estimated value of the fish caught in 1827 
amounted to 1811/. The gulf of Calpentyn is rich in chanks 
of the best quality, and also in bicho de mar, which latter is 
occasionally collected and exported to the markets of Sin- 
gapore and Penang by Chinese merchants. The neighbour- 
hood of Calpentyn produces finer chaya roots than can be 
met with elsewhere, and also a species of trees from which 
the wood oil is extracted. A great quantity of cbunam 
is also prepared by burning shells, which are found here 
in great abundance; and it is to be regretted that no efforts 
have been hitherto used to make this an article of export to 

In December 18'2fi, nine bronze Hindoo images were 
discovered in the garden of Manukl dk Rosairo Pully, 
while his servants were employed in levelling a rising ground ; 
and this circumstance proves that Cdlpentyn was once the site 
of an opulent city. Knox mentions it by the name of Calpen- 

C A L] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 27 

tyne, and describes it as one of the fortified places on the Island 
at his time. The Portugaese took possession of it in 1544^ 
and retained it till 1640; when the Dutch made themselves 
masters of the place by stratagem. On the 5th df 'Novem- 
ber i795^ it was surrendered to tfi^ British forces/cbmmanded 
by Colonel Sir John Bqwsor^ and has been in their possession 
ever since. 

Calpentyn (Gulf of). This is an arm of the sea on the 
north west coast, which runs towards the souths separating 
the main of Pomparippo and that of Putlam from the 
peninsula of Calpentyn. It is entered by two passages, one 
near Mutwal on the west side, and the other near the 
Koodremale point on the north east ; and affords safe anchor- 
age for even sloops as far as Calpentyn. The greatest breadth 
of the gulf is about 8 miles, but it gradually decreases as 
it advances to the south east ; and at Palawy, where, it 
joins the canal, it becomes contracted to a few yards. It is 
studded with several islands in the vicinity of||(Ualpentyn, 
but they are scarcely worth notice, as none of them is 
either fit for habitation or cultivation. In the neighbourhood 
of Putlam the bed of the gulf is muddy, and much infested 
with sea snakes, the bite of which often proves mortal. It is 
plentifully stocked with fish, and a considerable mullet ^shery 
is carried on along its north west coast. It also abounds in 
porpoises, dolphins, and turtles ; the latter are generally 
caught in the crawls which the fishermen place in ih6 shallow 
parts of the gulf. Besides the navigation and fishery, this 
gulf is of great advantage to the district, for the different salt 
works at Putlam and in the Akkarapattoo arc supplied with 
water from it by means of channels. 

Caltura, (Kalutotta) a district extending along the south 
coast, subordinate to the coUectorship of Colombo, Its 
greatest length from south east to north west is 38 miles, 
and in breadth from east to west II; and it is one of the 
■unt be^thy, pleasant, and populous districts in Ceylon. The 

28 Tlie Ceylon GazetUer. [CAR 

soil is remarkably iertiloy and the low lands produce three 
crops of paddy in the year ; while the hij^h lands are covered 
with groves, and plantations of cinnamon, cocoanut^ areka, 
and other trees, common to the Island. The cocoanut tree 
affords the inhabitants the means of carrying on an extensive 
distillation of arrack, and also of manufacturing cordage and 
jaggery. It contains, according to the census taken in 1814^ 
three Korles, ten pattoos, and three hundred and sixty eight 
villages, with *53,994 inhabitants ; of whom 28,662 are protes- 
tants ; 695(> Roman catholics; 63(54 Mohamedans ; and 12^018 

Caltura, the principal town of the above district, situated 
on the left bank of the Kalu ganga, about 25 miles south from 
Colombo. Latitude (T 42' north ; longitude 7Sf 51' east. It has 
a small fort, standing upon a mound, which commands the 
river. It is constantly cooled by the sea breezes, and is hence 
very salubritas, and a favorite resort for invalids from Colombo. 
There are about 200 tiled houses^ and the inhabitants consist 
of Burghers^inghalese, and Moors. There are a great number 
of Jatra dhonies belonging to this port, which trade to 
Madras and other places on the coast of Coromandel. The 
Wcsleyan Missionaries fixed upon this place as a station in 
I8I7, and have subsequently built a handsome chapel and 
school house. Sir Eow^ard and Lady Harriet Paget, 
honored the school with a visit during their stay of some 
weeks at Caltura, in 1824. 

A large plantation of sugar cane was raised at this place, 
with a view of carrying on the distillation of rum; but, in 
consequence of the excessive expence which attended the 
undertaking, it was afterwards abandoned. Since the district 
has been annexed to that of Colombo, this town has become 
the seat of a sub-collector and magistrate, and the custom 
house placed under an assistant custom-master. {Harvard, 

Carrativoe, a village and post station in the province 

CEY] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 29 

of Pomparippo* about 12 miles north west of Putlam, and 
directly opposite to Calpentyn, The majority of the inhabi- 
tants are Moors, and live in small huts built of mud. It has a 
lar^e tope of cocoanut trees, and tobacco is extensively 
cultivated. Salt marshes are found in the neighbourhood, 
which afford the inhabitants an opportunity of carrying on an 
extensive manufacture of salt. 

CETLON. The island, of which this work treats, is situated 
at the western entrance of the bay of Bengal, between the 
parallels of 5' 50' and 9* 50' north latitude, and 79* oO' and 
82* 10' east longitude. It is separated from the south eastern 
extremity of the Coromandel coast by the gulf of Manaar, 
and is distant about 140 miles from cape Comorin, on the 
Malabar coast. Its length may be estimated at about 280 
miles, while the breadth varies from 40 to 170 miles. It ig 
much broader in the southern than in the northern part, 
resembling in general outline the shape of a ham ; hence the 
narrow peninsula of Jaffna received from the Dutch the name 
o( Hamsheel, and the projecting angle of Point Pedro that 
of Hamsheel point. Its superficial extent is computed at 
24,6H4 square miles, but no accurate survey of it has yet been 
made whereby to fix it with precision. 

The Island is usually called ** Lankawe** by the Singha- 
lese; " Ilangei" by the Malabars; " Teva Lanka'* by th© 
Siamese ; and *' Lankapoore " by the Javanese ; all from 
the Sanskrit *' Lanka," which signifies " holy " or " resplendent." 
The Burmese call it ^^ Theho, or Zehoo." In history it bears 
the name of " Sinhaladwipa" (or the island of lionlike men) 
from which originated the modern appellation Seilan, or 
Ceylon, and its Arabic predecessors Seylandiva, Selendib or 
Serendih /—some derive these names from the Sdle or Chailias, 
who, however, settled at too late a period on the Island for 
this to be correct. It is likewise called " Hebenaro" or 

the fertile land; " " Eelam" or " tlie insular kingdom ; " and 

Tena^erim" or '' the place of delight" Among the Greeks 
9xA Romans, it was known by the name of ^* Taprobane/' 


30 The Ceylon GazetUer. [C E ¥" 

the etymology of which is disputed by many authors. Some 
deduce it from the Phenician words *' Tap^parvaim/* or ^'the 
shore of the Parvaim;** alleging that the latter (whom they 
identify with the modern Paravas) were at one time masters 
of the commerce of the Island ; others^ from " Tapo-ravoan^** or 
^ the Island of Raw as a,*' the giant-king who was conquered 
by Rama; others from the Sanskrit term ** Tepo-v(ma^ or 
" the wilderness of prayer ;" while many, with more probability, 
suppose it to have originated from the Pal6 word ^* Taniba^ 
pannya," which signifies a betel leaf, and to which the Island 
bears some resemblance in its figure. Bochart labours to 
support an hypothesis, that Ceylon was the Ophir of Solomon ; 
but on this point there are likewise many dissentient opinions : 
and since we do not find gold in any part of the Island^ we 
may rather conclude that what is adduced by Brucb, the 
Abyssinian traveller, on this head in favor of the kingdom 
of Sofala, on the east coast of Africa, is more likely to be 

It has been supposed by Mons. Burnard, in a memoir 
inserted in the Asiatic Journal for May 1821, that this Island 
formerly comprehended a greater extent of territory than it 
now does ; and that a considerable portion has been engulphed 
by some violent convulsion of nature. This supposition is 
confirmed, not only by the general appearance of the coast, 
but also by the traditions current among the natives, which 
place the citadel of Rawana where the Bassos are now 
situated, and which also give the Island a dimension of 7U0 
yojens in the remotest period. 

With regard to the general features of the coast, the eastern 
shore is, in many parts, bold and rocky, and the water deep ; the 
north and northwest coast, from Point Pedro to Colombo, is 
uniformly flat, and indented with bays and inlets from the sea^ 
of which the one extending from Mullativoe to Jaifnapatam, 
and the other from Koodremal6 to Putlam, are the most 
conspicuous. The south and south east coasts are much 
elevated, and present a very picturesque appearance^ Hmf 

C E Y] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 81 

iDteTior is diversified with lofty mountains and beautiful 
valleys, interspersed with prodigious forests. A range of mona« 
tains, extending across the whole country, nearly divides the 
Island into two parts ; at the southern point of which, Adam's 
iPeak rises 7150 feet above the level of the sea. There is 
also another ridge called Naminikulakanda, 5500 feet high; 
and one in Nuwera EUia, which rises 6000 feet, with a cir* 
cumference of 20 miles. In general, however, the mountainous 
region does not exceed from 1000 to ;2000 feet in perpendicular 
height, while the hilly region may be estimated at 600 ; and 
the coast on the southern side of the Island varies from 50 
to 100 feet, while the northern side is very much less. 

Although Ceylon lies under the equinoctial line, the heat 
is not so intense as on the neighbouring coast ; this is more 
particularly the cai^e near the sea, owing to the constant 
circulation of air. ''The mountains and table land in the 
interior produce the same effect as the Ghauts in Hindostan, 
which form a barrier to the periodical winds or monsoons^ 
and a corresponding change of season occurs. While the 
Malabar coast is visited in the months of May, June, and 
July, with hurricanes, torrents of rain, and tremendous storms 
of thunder and lightning, the western coast of Ceylon experi- 
ences the same visitation ; while the weather is calm and dry 
on the northern and eastern sides of the Island, and also on 
the Coromandel coast. On the contrary, when, in October 
and November, the north east monsoon assails the eastern side 
of the peninsula, the northern and eastern sides of the Island 
have abundance of rain ; while it is extremely dry on the 
opposite shores. In the central region there is a material 
difference, on account of the greater elevation : in March and 
April, the rains fall, but accompanied in the highest parts 
with severer storms than are felt in the table land of India.** 
In Colombo the quantity of rain that fell during the year 
1830 was 102 inches; of which 81 fell in the months of April, 
May, October, and November. In the southern districts the air 
is salubrious and agreeable ; the annual range of the thermo- 
meter at Colombo being from 7&* to bG^', and at Galle from 70* 

£2 Th€ Ceflam Gnzeiieer. [C E Y 

to87«; bnt in the northern parts, at Jaffna, it is from 70" to 
DO; and at Trincomallee from 71} to 91 i\ Thoagh the 
interior of the Island has been lone considered as inimical 
to Eunipean constitotionit, yet there are many parts which of 
late years have been decidedly othen^ise. In Ucwahetty, 
Walapanne, U^ia, and Kotmale, the thermometer ranges 
betMToen oO^ and H)* but rarely more than 7(i" at noon. At 
Kandv the annual range is from tit)' to b'i^ At the infant 
settlement of Nuwera Ellia the utmost ran^e of the thermo- 
meter for ibs3l did not exceed 73*» and this never occarred 
but once. In the months of January, February, and March, 
the common de«!rees of temperate at ni^ht are W^ 10* and 4i: 

At the first setting in of the rains in the northern districts, 
the inhabitants are subject to asue and fevers, which often 
prove fatal. This may be attributed partly to the sudden 
transition from heat to cold, and partly from the noxious state 
of the atmosphere arising from putrid vegetable matter, where- 
ever the water had become stagnant. Leprosy and elephantiasis 
are common in the south. 

Ceylon has only four rivers of considerable magnitude. 
These are the Mahawelli ganga, the Kaln gann> the Kalani 
ganga, and the Walawe ganga, all of which have their 
source in the group of mountains of which Adam's Peak 
is the centre. The first, after a northerly course, joins the sea 
at Cottiar ; the second takes a southerly direction to the sea 
at Caltura ; the third maintains a north westerly course to 
the sea at Matwal ; and the last, pursuing a south easterly 
course, falls into the sea at Matura. Of these four rivers 
three only are navigable. The Mahawelli ganga, which was 
formerly thought only to be navigable for boats as far as 
Bintenna, it is since ascertained, will admit of their passing 
down as far as Kandy. The Kalu ganga is navigable higher 
than Ta1game« and the Kalani ganga a short way above Rat- 
napoora. Of minor rivers there are the Dandoogam, the Maha 
oya, the Deduroo oya, the Mee oya, the Kala oya, (or Pom- 
parippo) the Kal aar, the Arrippo^ the Knmukan aar^ the 

C E T] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 33 

Menik ganga^ tbe Kirindi oya^ the Rannee oya^ the Madampe^ 
the Betitotte, the Kospothe oya, the Bilfaool oya, the Koo- 
roonda oya, the Damboolu oya^ the Attabage oya, and many 
others ; but none are navigable for boats of bnrden^ though 
some of them are isingularly nsefnl in floating timber from the 
forests to the sea coast. 

Of the many harbours which afford shelter to the marine 
on the coast of Ceylon^ those of Trincomalee and Point 
de Galle^ merit particular notice« The former^ which forms 
the glory of Ceylon^ is one of the most commodious ports in 
the world ; and it has been truly said^ that '' the whole navy of 
Great Britain might ride there in safety^ whilst the eastern 
monsoon was tempesting the neighbouring sea^ spreading 
terror through the bay of Bengal^ and covering with wreck 
the shores of the adjacent continent/' 

The soil varies in different situations on the Island, In the 
country around Colombo it consists of a strong red clay^ or 
marly called Caboot, mixed with sandy ferruginous particles ; 
at Galle it rests mostly on granite; but from Matuta to 
Tangalle the soil is sandy^ with a mixture of gravel and stones ; 
and from Hambantotte to Kandy^ the whole is sandy, barren, 
and generally impregnated with salt. In the Malabar districts, 
with a few exceptions, the soil is sandy and calcarious, resting 
upon madrapore, and is for the most part useless for the ' 
culture of paddy. The mountainous region of Nuwera Ellia 
possesses a soil consisting of a black mould, on a stratum of 
clay and gravel. 

Ceylon, rich in >every department of natural history, ex- 
hibits a variety of useful minerals. Not to mention iron ore, 
mica, the black oxide of manganese, &c., it contains an inex- 
haustible quantity of plumbago, and no less than twenty two 
caves from which nitre, nitrate of lime, sulphate of magnesia, 
and a small proportion of alum are obtained. The common 
salt is formed, both naturally and artificially, in several parts 
of the maritime provinces, particularly in Mahagampattoo ; 
and yields a gross revenue of about 27,000/. per anuum. Of 


34 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [C B T 

gems^ wbich are fonnd among the hills and rocks, and along 
the banks and beds of rivers^ the raby^ the cat's eye, the jargOD> 
the hyacinth, the sapphire, the topaz, the adamantine spar, (or 
corandam) the cbrysoberyl, the tourmaline (of a dark brown or 
yellow color), and the amethyst, may be enumerated, among 
many other. But the ruby and the cat's eye alone, are held in 
particular estimation ; and among the late king of Kand/s 
jewels, (which were sold by auction in London on the 18th of 
June, 1820) there was one of the latter stones which measured 
two inches in diameter, and sold for more than 400/. There are 
no mineral waters in Ceylon, but several hot springs ; five at 
Kannya in the neighbourhood of Trincomalee, and two in the 
province of Uwa. The former are often resorted to by invalids, 
and the water is deemed eficacious in rheumatic and cutane- 
ous disorders. 

Amongst the great variety of quadrup6ds with which Ceylon 
abounds, the elephant ranks first ; and is prized beyond those 
of other countries, on account of the superior quality of the 
ivory. Though when domesticated they prove very useful to 
man, yet in their wild state, they are very injurioua to agri- 
culture ; often making predatory incursions in large troops, and 
doing a great deal of mischief to the paddy crops and chenas, 
destroying much more than they consume. These animals are 
chiefly found in the northern and eastern parts of the Island, 
and formerly (from the great demand on the continent for 
them, to exhibit in the pageants at the courts of the Rajas 
and Polygars) were caught and exported in great numbers ; 
but at present very few are ensnared, and these are chiefly 
used by government for draft, and other purposes ; and there is 
a separate Modliar, two Mohandirams, and many subordinate 
oflScers, to superintend this establishment. In the district of 
Ptttlam, elephants were not caught as usual in crawls, (or en- 
closures formed with the trunks of trees) but ensnared singly, 
by facing him boldly in the open jungle ; and the persons 
employed in this hazardous undertaking, were paid a specified 
sum of money, according to the age, size, and description of the 
aoiimal, varying from 11 to 353 rixdollam. In 1896 a Rego- 

GET] f%€ C^hn Gazetteer. 35 

lation was published by Sir B» Barnes^ declaring it penal for 
any individual to take an elephant alive. It was not> however^ 
confirmed by His Majesty's ministers in England ; but as the 
keep of an elephant is a serious matter to any of the natives^ 
they are rarely known to possess one ; therefore the Regulation^ 
even had it remained in force, would not have affected them. 
Elephant shooting has lately become a favorite sport in Ceylon, 
and many are annually destroyed by Europeans who engage in 
it In the Island of Delft, government, till lately, kept a stud, 
the expence of which exceeded 1000/. per annum ; but the 
horses were ill shaped and bad, consequently the establish- 
ment has been abolished. Bullocks and buffaloes are found in 
abundance ; the latter are used for agricultural purposes, and in 
treading out corn. Sheep and goats abound in the north ; and 
from the milk of the latter, a small description of round cheese 
is manufactured at Manaar, but will not keep for any length 
of time. Asses are met with in some parts, but the use of 
them is considered so derogatory, that their services are only 
put in requisition by washermen, for conveying foul clothes 
from the villages to the bleaching ground. Beside these, the 
pig, the dog, and the cat, compose the list of domestic ani- 
mals. Among wild ones, we find cheetahs, bears, elk, deer, 
porcupines, wild hogs, hares, civet cats, jackalls, lynx, polecats, 
several species of monkies, ichneumons, two kinds of squirrels 
(the black backed, in size about thrice that of the European 
squirrel, and the common squirrel), mice, musk rats, and rats. 

Of reptiles and insects, Ceylon furnishes an endless variety. 
The most remarkable are the tortoise, the guana, the boa 
constrictor, the cobra capella, the polonga, the rat snake, the 
crocodile, the black and the white lizard, the frog, the toad, 
the chamelion, the tarantula, the different species of ants, the 
tick, the louse, the Spanish fly, the butterfly, the golden green 
beetle, the spider, tiie scorpion, the grasshopper, the gnat, the 
wasp^ the mosquito, the bee, and the glow worm« 

The catalogue of birds is more considerable than that of 
quadrupeds ; we sl\all therefore simply notice the pea fowl, 
the common fowl, the brahmin kite, the vulture, the flamingo. 

3MI Tke Ceyhm Gazetteer. [CBT 

the owl^ the goose^ the heron^ the several species of wild and 
tame ducks^ the crane, the spoonbill, the partridge, the quaU, 
the pigeon, the Indian roller, the honey bird, the thmsb, Ae 
parrot, the plover, the tailor, the bat, the woodpecker, the 
sparrow, the snipe, the hyder, the pheasant^ the swallow, fbe 
flycatcher, the rook, and myriads of crows. 

Ceylon is supplied with river and sea fish in great abund- 
ance ; among which may be enamerated the shark, king^s fish, 
pomfret, soles, whiting, mnllet, carp, porpoises, dolphins, rays, 
crabs, prawns, shrimps, lobsters, turtles, cockles, and oysters 
of an exquisite fiavor ; besides an innnmerable variety of beaa- 
tiful shells, and cowries. Sardinias aboand at Trincomalee ; 
but as death ensued to some individuals after eating them in 
the months of December and January, the government prohi- 
bited (by a Regulation passed in 1824) the catching them 
during those months. Bicho de mar is collected oflf the coast 
in the district of Chilaw, (including Putlam and Calpentyn) 
and also at Jaffna ; when dried it is exported to the Chinese 
market, where it is in great request, both as an article of food 
and for paste. In 1815, Mr. John Wilr ins, merchant, fanned 
the exclusive privilege of exporting Bicho de mar, from go- 
vernmenti for a period of five years; but his example was not 
followed up by any other person, so that the trade lies open. 
The north west coast abounds in pearl oysters and chanks, and 
though they were once a valuable source of revenue to govern- 
ment, the latter fishery has been long abandoned, owing to the 
little demand which is now made for them in Bengal. The 
chank fishery was always rented, and the renter was allowed to 
fish for them in any depth of water, and in all places adjacent 
to the coast of Ceylon, from the north point of Calpentyn to 
Mullativoe, excepting upon the pearl banks between Koodre- 
male and the north end of Manaar. He employed 600 divers, in 
as many ballams or canoes as he thought proper, which went 
to sea, and returned, in fleets, accompanied by a supervisor 
on the part of government, whose ballam was distinguished 
by a white flag, and who endeavoured^^ as far as was practicable. 

GET] 7%€ CeyloH Gazateer. 97 

to keep in the centre of the fleet. There are two sorts of 
chanks— red akid white-r-the one called payel, and the other 
patty. Those which open towards the right band are highly- 
valued by the Hindoos^ as representing the one in the hand of 
ViBhnu, and are seldom found. The most productive pearl 
banks are situated off Condachy^ extending about 30 miles 
from north to south, and 20 from east to. west. The fishery 
generally commences in March, when the north east monsoon 
has abated and calms predominate, and lasts till the sonth 
west monsoon sets in. From the fishery of 1829 the govern- 
ment realized a profit of WflOOL ; and the average amount of 
revenue from this source, calculated on the occasional receipts 
during the last thirty two years, is 14,662/. per annum. 

Among the trees indigenous to the Island, (if we except 
cinnamon, which furnishes the greatest item of its commerce) 
the claims of the cocoanut tree appear to predominate. Such 
is the benefit which this tree confers on the natives, that it is 
celebrated in song by the ancient bards ; and one of them thus 
elegantly expresses the quality of its fruit in a Sanskrit 
stanza : 

Utaggra nasi naeha paktki rdfd ['] 
Jahnta t&ri nagato na m^ghd 
Subbrakma ckdri nacha ckandro mdym 
Trin4tr dhari nacha Isvardndm* ['] 

Tt resides on high— yet it is not the king of the birds; 
It yields water— yet it is not the raining cloud $ 
It is white»yet it is not the moon ; 
It has three eyes— yet it is not Isvfara* 

With a trunk not pore than a foot in diameter, it frequently 
rises from forty to sixty feet high. It has no boughs or 

['] The Garuda, a bird ancred to VisBViTy and consequently worshipped by hit 
TOtaries. It is the FonOcberi eagb of 9ris$on» and its origin and history form the 
subject of one of the eighteen Purdtnat* 

(*] IswAKiw is one of the mystical names pf Siyai who is represented with three eyes. 


S8 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [GET 

leayes except on the sammit, where they expand like rays 
from a centre, and cover the head of the trunk with a ciide 
of shade. These leaves are each twelve or thirteen feet long; 
three feet broad^ and pennated ; and at their first springing up, 
are folded over each other, so as somewhat to resemble a 
cabbage. When fresh, the leaves, together with the flowers, 
are ased by the natives to ornament their wedding saloons ; 
and they also form an excellent food for elephants. The 
dry leaves are knit into cadjans and carsingoes for thatching 
honses; they are also wrought into brooms^ besides serv- 
ing for torches (or chools) for travellers. At the summit, 
and immediately under the place whence the branches spring 
out, the buds appear; which in outer figure resemble an 
elephant's tusk. They consist of a single coat, which, as the 
flower advances,* breaks, blows open, and exhibits the most 
beautiful specimen of blossom ever beheld. Incisions are 
made in the buds before they burst, from which a spirit ex- 
udes, called toddy, which is collected in earthen vessels; 
and by distillation this delicious sap is converted into arrack« 
If toddy is allowed to stand, it becomes very good vinegar ; or 
if impregnated with lime, and boiled, forms a description ojf 
coarse sugar^ called jaggery^ The nuts, which are of an 
oval shape, covered with a fibrous husk, hang down from 
the top of the tree, in clusters of a dozen or more together; 
they have a thick kernel of a whitish color, which, when fresh, 
aflfords a milky juice for preparing curries. The kernel is, 
however, more generally converted into oil ; — the process of 
which is simply by cutting the nuts into pieces, and drying them 
in the sun (which are then called copperahs), and afterwards 
pressing them in a mill. The natives use this oil for anointing 
their hair, for culinary purposes, for lamps, and for making soap. 
The refuse, or dry substance which remains, is called poonak, 
and furnishes good food for poultry and pigs. The shells of 
the nut are formed into goblets, ladles, and other domes.tic 
utensils ; and from the fibres, or husks, which envelope them, 
cordage of all sorts, from the smallest rope to a ship's cable, is 
manufactured. The trunk is of too spongy a nature to be used 

C E T] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 

in cabinet work ; but when the central pith is cleared away^ 
it forms excellent gutters for carrying oflF water. The duties 
levied on these various products by the British govemmenl^ 
amount, in the aggregate, to 35,573/. per annum. The palmyra, 
which flourishes in great perfection, particularly in the pro* 
vince of Jaffna, is equally as profitable as the cocoanut, and 
is the subject of a poem in Tamul, entitled ** Tdla Vildsam;" 
from which it appears, that it may be applied to eight hundred 
and one different purposes ; but the limits prescribed to this 
work, will not permit of their detail. The leaves, like those of 
the cocoanut, serve to thatch the native huts, as a substitutis 
for paper, and for making mats, winnows, and fans. Odils are 
the dried roots of this tree ; and punattoo is a jelly pre- 
pared from the fruit, on which a great proportion of the poorer 
classes subsist when the crops fail. The toddy is used as a 
beverage, and for making jaggery. The timber of the palmyra 
is much esteemed for rafters, and is exported in large quanti- 
ties to the continent. The kittul tree is peculiar to the south, 
and affords a sweet sap, from which a kind of sugar is made ; 
besides which the pith, when dried and pulverized, serves as 
a substitute for rice flour. The talipot tree, furnishes aa 
interesting subject of remark. One leaf will afford shelter to 
many individuals ; and is used by the natives to protect them 
from the scorching rays of the sun, and from deluging showers 
of rain. It bears no blossom till the last year of its growth, 
and the fruits are of no other value, than as seeds for the 
propagation of the tree. The leaves when mollified by the 
process of boiling, serve also as a material for writing on; and 
from their peculiar property in resisting the ravages of time, 
they are generally sought for, and used to make transcripts 
from valuable manuscripts. In addition to these, the mango, 
the tamarind, the katapa, the gorka, the jack tree, the bread- 
fruit tree, the coffee tree, the cashew, the arekanut tree, the 
jambulan, the marmel, the woodapple, the morunga, the 
illippe, the nelli, and the punnei, may be quoted for the utility 
of their products; and the bogaha^ the banyan^ and the 

40 The Ceyltm Gazetteer. fC B T 

flooria, (or talip) lor the beauty of their foliage. Timber of 
every description is found all over the Island ; but ac€M>rdiiig « 
to a Regulation lately passed by government, none can be cut 
in the government forests without a special license from the 
collector of the district^ under a severe penalty ; one tenth of 
the value was also levied on the grantee ; and to insure a 
succession of trees, headmen were obliged to propagate plants 
to supply the place of those which were felled. In the Kan- 
dian provinces, snch trees as are required exclusively for go- 
vernment use are marked with a broad arrow, and no indivi- 
dual can fell one. Cotton and hemp are cultivated in several 
parts of the interior with much success. Chaya root, wfaidi 
yields a scarlet dye, grows wild almost all over the northern 
districts; and the collection, as well as the sale of it, was once 
the exclusive monopoly of government, farmed out to private 
individuals. In 1880, however, the monopoly was abolished, 
the revenue of it having declined from 2000/1 to 300/. per an- 
num ; and the trade is now not only left open, but free from aQ 
taxes. None but a particular class of natives dig for the roots, 
and when under a monopoly, they were remunerated at the rate 
of id. per pound. Indigo likewise grows wild ; but from an expe- 
riment made by Mr.MooN at Kandy,it does not seem to flourish 
when cultivated. Tobacco is raised both in the southern and 
northern districts, and also in the province of Uwa, but. the 
two former places may boast of by far the larger produce. It 
was formerly exported to the Malayan markets, but at present 
it is chiefly consumed in southern India and in the Island. 
Fruits, and vegetables for culinary purposes, are found in great 
abundance and variety; and the Island is not deficient in 
products for medicinal use. 

Of paddy, there are (according to Mr. Moon's catalogue) 
one hundred and sixty species. Ceylon is, however, sadly 
deficient in the cultivation of these varieties, and of course 
must yield the palm of superiority to the adjacent coast. But 
it should be remembered, that formeriy it was the reverse; 
and an estimate of the extent to which it was once cultivated. 

CElti The Ceylon Gazetteer. 41 

may be formed by the numerous ruins of tanks^ which 
are to be found in different parts of the Island ; and which^ 
when in repair^ used to secure the waters of the periodical 
rains^ for the purpose of irrigating lands then under the plough. 
It is said that the king M\ha Prakrama fiAHoo» who 
resided at Polonnaruwa^ and succeeded to the throne in the 
year 1153, devoted his whole attention to agriculture, and had 
1475 tanks of different dimensions newly built, 1855 repaired^ 
534 canals excavated, and 3300 old ones rebuilt Most of 
these useful works are now in ruin; and as the inhabitants, for 
want of capital, are unable to restore them to their former 
use, many millions of acres, which were formerly cultivated by 
these. means, are now overgrown with jungle. The Island 
produce of paddy at this period is not sufficient to meet 
the demand of the inhabitants; hence the northern districts 
chiefly depend on supplies from the Coromandel coast ; and 
' the total value of the import of the same in the year 1831 was 

t 11 

* A tax varying from ^ to f^ is exacted by government 

on the gross produce of the paddy; and the revenue derived 
from this source was, in 1828—20,623/.; in 1829—32^)61/.; in 
1830--S5,057/.; and in 183 1--35,548/. 

Among the dry grains sown in high lands, torakan forms 
a ma^terial portion of the diet of the lower orders ; and when 
the crops of paddy fail, it tends greatly to alleviate their 
wants. It is ground into flour with band-mills, and made 
into flat cakes and into puddings; but it is not reckoned a very 
wholesome food. 

With regard to the manufactures, the most important article 
next to salt (which has been before noticed) is arrack ; from 
the sale of licenses, for the distillation and sale of which, 
the government derives an annual revenue of 28,620/« It 
was formerly distilled both in the Singhalese and Malabar 
districts, but since 1820 it has been restricted to the former, 
and that too under very excessive taxation. Iron is made 
in the provinces of Matora and Uwai suid the native mechanics 


42 The CeyUm Gazetteer. niBT 

are not wanting^ in the knowledge of mannikctoring: the vaijaoi 
kinds of implements nsed by them, sach as guns, kni^fei^ 
swords^ spears, arrows, mattocks, plouii:hshares, azes^ car- 
penters' tools, fasteiiiniifs for houses, and boat bnilding. Cloth 
of a coarse texture is manufactured in the interior; bat in 
some of the northern districts, table cloths, towels, toopettie^ 
camboys, gown pieces, and handkerchiefs are wove with 
great success. At Chilaw and Putlam the females spin the 
thread which is required for these purposes : while at Colombo, 
where the intercourse with Europeans has been much great^, 
we find they can knit socks, and make lace for their bajees. 
Wax candles are also manufactured in Colombo, as also bone 
buttons, straw hats, trunks, cart-wheels, and palanquins. Coir 
rope, cadjans, carsingoes, baskets, mats, tampachies^ and 
gunny bags, are also made in different parts of the Island, 
and jaggery is made from the cocoanut, palmyra, and kittui 
trees. Of oils, the cocoanut, the margose, the illippe, the 
pannai, the turpentine, the wood, the makkool, the koola; and 
castor oil, may be enumerated. The manufacture of the first 
of these is now conducted at Colombo by means of steam 
engines, which were sent out from England with the view 
of leading to the general introduction of machinery into the 
Island. Chunam, a kind of lime, is prepared by burning sea 
shells, and there are a great number of potteries for hock^ 
tiles, and cooking apparatus. 

Except the high roads on the sea coasts, which however 
were not fitted for wheel carriages, there were no regular 
roads in any part of the Island, prior to the accession of 
the British government. The line of road into the interior 
was merely a narrow foot path, winding through thick thorny 
jungle, and over steep hills ; and ia the rainy seasons, travel* 
lers were frequently stopped in their progress. But within 
the last seventeen years, aud more particularly during the 
administration of Sir Edward Barnes, whose enlightened 
mind foresaw the beneficial results which good roads would 
afford, were conceived, and executed, those mighty works 
which must excite the admiration of all who view them; 

ri ' 

~ - • 

C iS^ltf 2%^ Ceyton Gazetteer. 4S 

and which will hand down his name to posterity. For in 
proportion as civilization increases in the colony^ so much 
more will bis laborious achievements be daly appreciated ; 
for it is the native who will be, and is benefited. Carriage 
roads have been made from Colombo as far as Chilaw to 
the northward, and through Galle as far as Matura to the 
southward. Roads have also been made through various 
parts of the interior, before inaccessible; thus affording fa^- 
cilities of communication with the principal stations on the 
coast, and contributinsf materially to stimulate the exertion 
of the inhabitants, by furnishing the opportunity of conveying 
the produce of their labors to the markets, and enabling them 
to procure such comforts for themselves as they were previa 
ously unable to obtain ; besides the incalculable benefit arising 
to them from intercourse with Europeans. The first, in point 
of splendor and general good order, is the road from Colombo 
to Kandy, by Kadugannawa, a distance of 72 miles. It has 
been carried through some difficult passes in the hills, and is 
connected by several bridges ; the largest of which, are those 
over the Mawanella and Mahawelli rivers : the former consist- 
ing of four brick arches each of 50 feet span, and the latter of 
a single wooden arch ^5 in span. Already numerous bazars 
and villages have appeared in the intermediate space, and 
there are, besides, seven rest houses, built at certain distances, 
for the accommodation of travellers. 

Since the anival of the present Governor, Sir Bobbrt 
WiLMOT HoRTON, a JMail coach (the first in India) has 
been established by a Joint-stock company, to run between 
Colombo and Kandy by the above road : and follo\ving up the 
plans adopted by his noble predecessor, we find him continu- 
ing the same line of carriage road across the Island, from 
Kandy to Trincomalee. 

There are no canals of any importance in the Island, 
if we except the one which connects the inland navigation 
between Calpentyn and Colombo. This is another monument 
of Sir Edward Barnes' feme; for though it was projected 
by the Dutch, by him it was carried into effect; and a more 

46 The Ceylon Oaxettur. t^ KT 

increasinfT. It mfiy not be unworthy of remark that ereh 
Earopean goods are now found in most of the inland villages 
for sale. 

The followinti^ are the particulars of the Reveoae and 
eharges of Ceylon^ for the year 1881. 

£• s. d. 

Cinnamon 100,434 11 11 

Sea Customs 64,IOi 4 ^ 

Pearl Fishery S8;)3*2 8| 

Land Rents 25,h07 4 1 

LandCustoms 4»2H1 16 9\ 

Licenses 29«4(>7 3i 

Fishrents 7,773 5 8 

Salt 27,891 8i 

Stamps 3,117 11 10| 

Judicial receipts 10,%2 1 2| 

Commutation tax 3,314 15 6 

PostOffices 1,574 6 6| 

Lands and Houses 637 16 6i 

Steam Engine 4,9l2 15 7 

Auctionduty 244 9 S 

Stud 456 12 

Elephant tusks • 22 6 9 

Plumbago 35 16 1 

Tribute from the Weddaratte 51 13 4| 

Total Fixed Revenue 318,849 9 3| 


Civa J ^'■'''"^'y 109.818 17 61 

c Extraordinary 98^3 10 2J 

Military 10d,<^96 10 6 


£814,433 18 OJ 

With regard to the military force of Ceylon, there are at 
j^resent gfurisoned in the different principal stations^ about 


C E Yl , The Ceylon Gazetteer. 47 

4000 men, iDcIuding non-comroissioDed officers, of whom nearly 
one half are Malays and Singhalese, and the rest Europeans* 
^ The Ecclesiastical Establishment is composed of an Arch- 
deacon, six Chaplains, of whom two are natives, and eleven 
Proponents. There are in the Singhalese provinces ninety three 
schools, and six in the Malabar provinces, maintained by 
government. These were formerly under the superintendence of 
a Principal, but this system has been lately changed, and they 
are now placed under the Archdeacon himself, as the king's 

Of the Vaccine Establishment, the Inspector of Hospitals is 
the superintendent general; and the efforts made by government 
to diffuse the operation of this salutary antidote to the small 
pox among the natives, sufficiently proves the interest taken 
in their welfare. 

The Charitable and Public Institutions of Ceylon, are 
neither numerous nor extensive. Among these I shall merely 
notice : 

The Colombo Auxiliary Bible Society 

The Colombo District Committee of the Society for 
Promoting Christian Knowledge 

The Colombo Religious Auxiliary Tract Society 

The Colombo Friend in Need Society 

The Ceylon Improvement Society 

The Military Medical Library and Museum 

The Colombo Bible Association 

The Colombo Library 

The Pettah Library 

The Kandy Library 

The Galle Reading Room 

The Poors' Fund 

The Leper Hospital 

The Orphan School 

The Cotta Christian Institution 

The Wesieyan Mission Academy 

The Jaffna Benevolent Society 
'^ The Jaffna Auxiliary Religious Tract Society 

48 Tk$ CeyUm Oatetteer. X^XT 

The Jaffna Branch Bible Society 
The Galle Branch Bible Society 
The Trincomalee Branch Bible Society 
The Jaffna Tamul Association 
The Mullagam Tamul Association 
The Batticotta High School. 

Independent of these institutions a Savings' Bank has been 
lately established at Colombo^ under the patronage of govem- 
meut. Deposits of not less than one shilling, and not 
exceeding thirty pounds in the whole^ during each and every 
year, are received and invested, and interest, at the rate of five 
per cent per annum, allowed to the depositors on each deposit. 
When the principal and interest together amount to 200L, 
the interest given to the depositors on the amount, is rednoed 
to three per cent, per annum. The Bank places out the money 
received in deposit at seven per cent, interest. 

The population of Ceylon is chiefly composed of Singhalese^ 
Malabars, Moors, and a small proportion of EuropeaDS, 
Burghers, and Caffrees. The following is an abstract of the 
census taken in 1831. n 

Singhalese Districts ;— Ma&bl Fimau^ 

Colombo 121,001 118,790 

Galle 44,416 43,826 

TangaUe £0,899 41,683 

Chilaw 16,479 14,267 

Malabar Districts : — 

Jaffna 76,600 69,928 

Trincomalee 9,021 7^14 

Batticalo 14,174 13,400 

BJanaar lO.^iO 9fi27 

Delft IfiiS 1,422 

Kandyan Provinces 157,526 130,960 

Total 600,975 449,517 

OBY^ 7%^ Ceylon Gazetteer. 49 

The Civil and Military Government of the Colony is vested 
in a Governor and Council, composed of the Chief Justice, the 
Commander of the Forces, the Commissioner of Revenue, the 
Treasurer, and the Puisne Justice, who are all nominated by 
the crown. Under the former system of government, the coun- 
cil possessed no real control ; but under the new constitu- 
tion, the governor cannot act without their assent, except in 
cases where he might be compelled to incur the serious 
responsibility of acting in opposition to them. The draft 
of every law which is intended to be passed, is first published 
in the Government Gazettee for one calendar month, and the 
protests of any opposing party are entered in the minutes of 
the council. 

For the Administration of Justice throughout the Island, 
there are, in the Civil and Criminal Department, 

A Supreme Court, established at Colombo, 
A Vice Admiralty Court, 
A High Court of Appeal. 

Three Minor Courts of Appeal, — one at Colombo, one at 
Galle, and one at Jaffna. 

Seven Provincial Courts^ stationed in the following Dis- 
tricts; viz., 

Colombo, Jaffna, 

Galle and Matura, Manaar, 

Calpentyn^ Batticalo, 


Independent of the preceding Courts, there is a number of 

Magistracies, whioh are fixed in the undermentioned towns and 

villages : 

Colombo, Girrawaypattoo, 

Negombo, Matura, 

Pantura, M ahagampattoo, 

Caltura, Bdligam, 

Galle, Jaffna, 

Ballepitty Mo, Point Pedro, 


50 7%e CeyUm Gazetteer. [CEY 

Chawagassery, Mallativoe, 

Kaits^ Deldt Island^ 

Mallagam^ Calpentyn. 

Almost all the above magistracies are filled by barghera^ 
no native having as yet been allowed to participate in the 
benefit they confer; the rank of Maha-modliar> being the 
highest a native can attain Bat^ as many natives may be foond 
who are as competent to discharge the duties, and as capable of 
filling these places of trusty as the burghers^ we may hope to see 
the native rise above his present degraded standard^ and 
share in the emolument, as well as the honor, of holding situ- 
ations under the British government 

The Collectors of Revenue and Customs in the maritime 
provinces were formerly eleven in number; but are now 
restricted to eight, and stationed in the following districts : 

Colombo, Trincomalee, 

Galle, Jaffna, 

Tangalle, Manaar, 

Batticalo, Chilaw. 

Although the title of their oflSce implies only the collecting 
of revenue and custom, they are the representatives of go- 
vernment in their respective districts^ and have the sole control 
over its affairs^ besides acting as justices of the peace, and 
settling all such minute differences and broils as may come 
before them, on their circuit through the district. 

Though the Interior of the Island has been long annexed to 
the British sovereignty, the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court 
does not extend thither; but justice is administered by a 
Board of Commissioners, consisting of the Commandant (who 
is the first in precedence) and the Judicial and Revenue Com- 
missioners. The Judicial Commissioner decides all litigation 
regarding land, &c., besides examining the diaries of the 
agencies of the surrounding districts. The Board meets once 
or twice a week, when all matters touching the Judicial or 

C E Y] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 51 

Revenae Departments are examined, and decided on, or 
referred to the governor^ as the case may be. 

By whom Ceylon was originally peopled is a qaestion which 
is very much involved in obscnrity ; and, we fear, can never be 
satisfactorily solved. Some inscriptions have lately been 
discovered in one of the Malabar districts, and from the 
resemblance of their characters to those on the pillar at Alia* 
habad, H a conclusion is drawn, that the aboriginal inhabitants 
of this Island and those of the latter place were of one and 
the same stock ; but since the knowledge of these characters 
appears to be lost, it seems impossible to trace from what 
nation those inhabitants originally sprung. Some of the cha- 
racters exhibit a striking similarity to the Cadmean letters ; 
but we cannot possibly infer from this circumstance, that either 
Allahabad or Ceylon received their original population from 
Greece or Ionia. 

Mythology represents Ceylon in ancient times as inhabited 
by the Rakshas, or giants ; but in (he present stage of civiliza- 
tion^ this is too absurd to be thought of. Sir William 
Jon bs, however, advances an hypothesis, that the Island was, 
** beyond time of memory," inhabited by the Hindoo race ; 
and he refers to '^ the languages, letters, and old monuments 
of its various inhabitants/* to support it. 

I. The Singhalese inhabit the interior districts and the sea 
coasts, extending from the Kumukan aar, bounding Mahagam- 
pattoo, to the northern limit of Chilaw. They are beyond 
all doubt, a distinct and original nation ; though by some they 
have been erroneously reckoned a mongrel race, sprung from 
the promiscuous intercourse of the Malabars and Teloogoos at 
an early period ; while others deduce their origin from the Chi- 
nese, or Siamese. In the Sulamani Nigandu, a dictionary of 
great authority among the Malabars, and which has for its 
author Vbbra Mandalava, an ancient king of the Camatic, 
as also in the Maha Bharata, and Kamayana, their name as 

[>] Vide Asiatic Researches, fol, fii. p. 14.. 

52 The Ceyhm Gazetteer. [C E Y 


well as langaage is alluded to. It is however a misfortune that 
they never had a king of their own ; for while they occupied 
the region of Kalinga (now called Cicacole) they were subject 
to the Kalingas, and when they settled in Ceylon they sub- 
mitted to the rule of the Teloogoos and Malabars. Bholen H 
fixes the period of their emigration coeval with the arrival of 
WiJAYA Raja on the Island, or 543 years before Christ; and 
he further adds, that it was subsequent to this events that the 
Island began to be called Sinhaladwipa. 

The Singhalese differ materially from the Malabars in their 
physiognomy, but very little in their complexion. There 
is a great difference between the characters and habits of the 
Singhalese of the sea coasts and those of the interior. In 
the former, a progressive assimilation to the manners and 
the style of their European neighbours is perceptible ; while 
the latter scarcely evince any change whatever, either in 
their manners or customs. The practice for a woman 
to be married to all the brothers of a family, still exists in 
many places : [*] — but the mild influence of Britain, it is 
sincerely to be hoped, will in time render them equal in point 
of civilization to their brethren on the sea coast. 

Though the Singhalese are professors of the tenets of 
BuDHA (which recognize no distinction of caste), yet caste is 
observed among them with the nicest punctuality. Like 
the Malabars, they divide their nation into four principal 
tribes, but they give the Rdjas precedence over the Brahmins. 
Strictly speaking they have but one division, which is the last, 
namely, SMras, comprising the following classes : 
1 Gowiyo, husbandmen. 
3 Karawo, ^^A^rmen. 

[*] Ancient India, yoL t p. 29. 

[*] It would appear that the practice, revolting as it is to our sentiments, is yery 
ancient, and was once tolerated among the Hindoo kings; for, on a reference to the 
Maka JRharat, we find the five Pandawa heroes, who were brothers, publicii/ cohabited 
with the Princess Dropeda, daughter of the king of Panjab, whom one of them only 
had married by bending a bow few were able to lift, in lieu of the portion of her 
Tirgtni^. It itiU prevails in Tibet, and ampng the Nayro on the Malabar coast. 

C E T] The Ceylon Gazetteer. AS 

3 DurawOy toddy drawers. 

4 Nawandanno^ artificers. 

5 ChaliaSy weavers-^Cinnamon peelers* 

6 H»kkurOy Jaggery makers. 

7 AmbatteyOy barbers. 

8 Haonali^ tailors. 

9 Hammara, shoe makers. 

10 KumbeWOf potters. 

11 Ween?Lwo, elephant catchers. 

12 Hunno, lime burners. 

13 Hannu kottanno, wood cutters. 

14 Hanugambaduy cattle keepers. 

15 Radawo, washermen. 

16 Berrawayo^ musicians. 

17 Heeri, pioneers. 

18 Olias, dancers. 

19 PallOy washermen for the Hanno. 

20 Hinnawo^ ditto for the Chalias. 

21 Gangawo, ditto for the Heeri. 

22 Paduwo, porters. 

23 Palleru, woodmen. 

24 Rodiya^ outcasts. 

The higher orders among the Singhalese^ (belonging ex- 
clasively to the caste of Gowiyo) are distinguished by the 
epithet ^^ Handrew" or gentlemen, and they are proud of 
long sounding titles and show. The insulting distinction of 
superior and inferior castes is carried to so great a length, 
that even the minutiae of dress are rendered a subject of 
restriction, under the countenance of a Regulation enacted 
by General Maitland on the L9th of August, 1809. 

II. The Malabars (or Tamuls) occupy the northern and 
north eastern parts of Ceylon, and their districts extend 
from the Kumukan aar, bounding the Mahagampattoo, to the 
southern limit of Putlam, round by Jaffna. It would appear 
uot only from their own traditions, but also from the annals of 
the Singhalese themselves, that they are not indigenous in 

54 The Ceyhn Gazetteer. f C E Y 

the Island, bat came from the opposite coast of Coromandel ; 
not however in the character of emigrants, bat that of invaders^ 
in several successive expeditions; and though they did not 
succeed in establishing an universal monarchy over the 
whole Island, yet they obtained a permanent footing on it 
by forming a powerful kingdom in Jaflfna, besides a number 
of petty states in the different parts of Wanny, which latter 
they maintained as late as the last century. The Singhalese 
annals mention four several invasions by the Malabars; the 
first of which took place in the year of Budha 839, the second 
in 43i), the third in 977, and the last in 1759 ; but it was during 
the first that an immense number passed over to Ceylon, 
for we arc told that ** the whole island was completely overrun 
by them." 

There is scarcely a shadow of difference between the 
Malabars of Ceylon and those on the coast in their features 
and complexion; but in some points they differ in their 
manners and customs, which it is unnecessary to particularise 
here, since an ample account has been given in an Essay 
published by the author of this work in 1831. It will not, 
however, be irrelevant to remark, that the Malabars resident 
at Colombo, (who arc mostly Chitties) are gradually ap- 
proximating to Europeans in their costume ; and their domestic 
manners are of late much improved. Instead of sitting cross- 
legged on mats at meals, as formerly, they now sit on chairs 
at tables ; they no longer eat out of the same dish, and their 
meals are served up with regularity and neatness. Scarcely a 
month passes without social parties, and they have lately given 
two fancy balls, one of which, by Simon Bodrigo Chinuaiah 
Modliar, was honored with the presence of His Excellency 
the Governor Sir Robert Wilmot Horton and family, and 
many other distinguished individuals. 

The Malabars in Ceylon have not among them the tribe 
of Kshatriyasy though they recognize it in their classification. 
The following is an enumeration of the rest of the castes into 
which they are divided ; viz.. 

C E Y] The Ceylon Gazettes. fiS 

1 Brahmins, or priests. 

2 ChittieSy or merchants. 
9 Vellaler, or landlords. 

4 Idayer, or herdsmen. 

5 Madapalli ^ 

6 Agampudiyar > cultivators. 

7 Mara we r ' 

8 Parawer ->| 

9 Karreyar 

10 Palli Willi . 

11 Sempadawer ^Mermen, 

12 Timiler | 

13 Muknwer -^ 

14 Thanakarer, or tobacco planters. 

15 Shdn^nar, or toddy drawers. 

16 Kadcyer^ or lime burners. 

17 Chiviyar, or palanquin bearers. 

18 Kowiyer^ or bondsmen. 

19 Seniyer, or weavers. 

20 Nalawer, or toddy drawers. 

21 Parreyar, or tom-tom beaters. 

22 Pallcr or ploughman. 

Besides the preceding castes^ there is another division of 
people called Kudimakkel, or domestic servants, but of which 
they have in Ceylon only the following ; 

1 Navider, or barbers. 

2 KoUer, or blacksmiths. 

3 Tattar, or goldsmiths. 

4 Kannar, or brass founders. 

5 Tatcher, or carpenters. 

6 Sitper, or masons. 

7 Paner, or tailors 

6 \ aniyer, or oil makers. 
9 Kosaver, or potters. 
10 Wannar, or washermen. 

56 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [GET 

III. The Moors are foand in almost all parts of the sea 
coast, as well as in the interior; and they, like the two 
preceding: races, are settlers from the coast of India, It is 
affirmed by Sir Alexander Johnston, that they formed 
their commercial settlements on the Island as early as the 
eighth century. The Sin&;halese annals also mention their 
having been often employed as auxiliaries to the contending 
princes of the country, and at one time endeavoured to acquire 
a political footing on the Island, but without success. The 
origin of the Moors is traced to a colony of exiles who were 
banished from Arabia, for thetr pusillanimous conduct, by Mo- 
hammed; and they have become so much amalgamated with 
the converts they made from the lower orders of Malabars, 
that they are not held in any great estimation by other nations. 
Though in their own opinion and belief they resemble their 
progenitors, yet in their habits and customs they resemble 
the Malabars, and speak no other language. Among the 
Moors likewise, the distinction of caste appears to be tolerated* 
They classify themselves into four orders; viz., merchants, 
weavers, fishermen, and barbers ; and distinguish each by some 
honorary mark. 

It may not be improper to mention here^ that formerly the 
natives in general, were liable to perform Ouliam or com- 
pulsory service to government ; but by an order of the King 
in Council, dated the 12th of April 1832, they have been 
emancipated from this degrading yoke, and placed on an equal 
footing with His Majesty's European subjects. 

It has been supposed by Nicephorus, that St. Thomas 
the Apostle preached the Gospel in Ceylon ; but this sup- 
position carries no marks of evidence with it. Modem writers 
generally agree that Christianity was first introduced into the 
Island by some Nestorian missionaries, who accompanied the 
merchants from Persia; and Cosmas Indigoplsustes, who 
visited it in the sixth century, found churches established. There 
were however no remains of these churches extant when the 
Portuguese arrived on the Island, and therefore the permanent 

CET] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 67 

introdaction of Christianity appears to have been effected by 
St. Francis Xavier, justly styled the Apostle of the Indies. 
He preached in the neighbourhood of Manaar in 1544^ and 
from among his converts 600 fell noble martyrs to the faith 
they had adopted. 

'Among the Christians of different denominations in Ceylon 
the most numerous are the Roman catholics^ who are remark- 
ably strict in their attendance at public worship, and their 
observance of religions rites and ceremonies. Of the Protes- 
tantSy the greater part are of the Church of England, some, 
however, are Presbyterians, some Lutherans, and some Metho- 

The Badhist religion is generally professed in the interior, 
and by the great mass of the Singhalese on the sea coasts. It 
is said to have been introduced in the first year of the reign of 
Dbvbnipeatissa (or 306 years before Christ) from Patalipura 
in Dambadiwa. The priests are regularly educated for the 
sacred office, and at the close of their prescribed studies are 
appointed to it with great pomp. In their orders of Maha- 
nayaka, Nayaka, Tirunansey, and Oaninanseyj we find a cor- 
respondence to Archbishops, Bishops, Priests, and Deacons. 
They make no distinctions in the form and color of their 
robes, which are uniformly yellow, and differ among the 
various orders in quality only. Their WihareSy or temples, 
as well as their Pansalles, or monasteries, are well endowed ; 
and in the interior, by a convention entered into on the 
2d of March 1816, between Sir Robert Brownrigg on the 
part of the British Government, and the Kandyan chiefs 
on the part of the inhabitants, it was stipulated that the 
BuDHiST religion should be maintained and protected. Hence 
the selection and appointment of priests is still exercised 
by government ; and the public exhibition of the Dalada relic 
of BuDHA at Kandy, in 1828, was conducted under the im- 
mediate superintendence of the governor himself. 

The Hindoo religion prevails in the northern parts, among 
the Malabars^ but its professors are chiefly the worshippers of 

68 T%e Ceylon Gazetteer. [CEY 

With regard to the Langaage^ the Singhalese apeak none 
bat Singhalese ; but their sacred compositions^ and the clas- 
sical writings of their bards, are written either in Pali or 
Sanskrit. The Malabars use the Tamul both for colloquial 
and literary purposeis; with the exception of the Brahwuns 
in Jaffna, who write Sanskrit in the Chrantha characters. The 
Ceylon Portuguese prevails in the European settlements, but 
its use is not universal among the natives. The Singhalese 
have among them, besides works on the life and doctrines of 
BuDHA, many books, both in verse and prose, on moral 
subjects, grammar, medicine, astronomy, and various branches 
of literature common to other Eastern nations ; they have also 
the history of the kings of Ceylon, from the first, but the latter 
work is often enveloped in fable. The Malabars possess a 
complete version of the Purands, including Skanda, BhagavatcLp 
RamayoHa, and Mahabharata in Tamul yerse, besides a 
multitude of original works on grammar, chemistry, and phar- 
macy, with many treatises on astrology, magic, psalmistry, and 
omens; and also the stories of Vikramaditya, the HetopO' 
desa, and numerous dramatic productions. Among those who 
have embraced Christianity, a great number of works have 
been of late written in imitation of the heathen productions ; 
but it is hardly necessary to particularise them here. We 
shall, therefore, simply offer a catalogue of their comedies and 
tragedies, as a curiosity. 

The Three Kings —Joseph and his brethren— Moses«- The 
Ruined Merchants — ^The Poor Jew— Constantine the Great— 
The Emperor Henric— Lucian of Antioch «-Enstachius — St. 
Bridget— St. Agnice— St. Christiana— St. Faith — St. Hriena 
—St. Nicholas— St. Margaret— Lucifer and his infernal hosts 
— The Divine Ploughman. 

While the Singhalese and Malabars have each their own 
peculiar literature, the Moors have not been backward in 
the study of Tamul. Among their works the epic poem 
entitled ^^ Seera," of which Mahommed is the hero, deserves 
particular notice, and the style reflects no little credit on its 
illustrious author. 

CEY] TH Ceylon Gazetteer. $9 

E^ly notices respecting Ceylon are found in the Ramnyania 
of Valmika^ i^ whioh it is mentioned asi an i3lai;id 3itt^^4 
in tbe Dqkshatm Samudra, or south sea^ an^d formed bty thr^^ 
of the one thoosand and eight p^ks of the goldei^ Meru> whic^ 
were severed from the parent rock -during a tremendo:^i| 
conflict between Sesha, the huge serpent who hears the ^arth, 
and Vasu Dkva, the genii who preside over tb^ winds. It 
is said that some time after the formation of the Island, 
Maliwan> Sumali, and Mxhh of the tribe of i&iA:sA(i5a too]^ 
possession of it^ and with tlie assistance of Viswaka.rma, 
the engineer of the god^ built a pity on it caHed Lanka ; bu( 
when these adventurers were defeated by Yishnu for Oj^nress* 
ing the godSj, they retired to PatAlam, the infernal re£[ipn^« 
and the Island remained desolate for many ages* Afterward^ 
KuviRA> t^e god of riches^ with the permissioii of his tatheif 
PuLASTYA Brahma^ took i^p his residence on the Island, but 
he was not allowed to occupy it long, for Bawana, the 
grandson of the defeated Rdkshasas, soon compelled hio^ to 
surrender it to him, and to retire to the region of Imaus. It 
was this Rawana who forcibly seized and detained Sita, 
the consort of Rama, occasioned the war in which he lost his 
life, and had the mortification to witness his whole capital laid 
in ashes. 

From all that can be gleaned from the equally fabulous 
narrations of the Singhalese annalists, it appears, that after 
the extinction of the sovereignty alluded to in the Ramayana, 
the Island continued for a term of 1845 years desolate, and 
inhabited by a race whom they (perhaps sarcastically) call 
Demons ; and respecting whom, they mention nothing further 
than their total extirpation by the founder of their dynasty, 

WiJAYA was the first king of the Singhalese dynasty ; but 
with respect to the date of his arrival in Ceylon, modern authors 
are much at variance,— some fixing it in the year of the World 
1996, others in the year of Christ 106 and 350 ; but the most 
probable period was 643 years before the Birth of Christ He 
was the son of a king of Waggoo, who, it is said, was 
procreated by a lion; but having proved obnoxious to the 

82 Tke Ceylon Gazetteer. [GET 


K<w Sorereign. SeatofOort. A. D. T. M. D. 

88 Sanda Moohoona, or 7 A^^^^^^h^^^^^.. a^ q .* /\ 

Chanda Makha Seewa } ^^ooradhapoora 49 8 7 

39 Yasa Siloo^ or Yataalaka Tissa • • do • . • • 49 7 8 

40 Subha do.... 56 6 

41 Wahapp, or Wasabha do • • • • G2 44 

42 Waknais, or Wanka Naasika • • • . do • . • • 106 3 

43 Gajaabahoo Ist.^ or Gaaminee • • • . do • • . » 109 22 

44 Mahaloomaaoa, or Mallaka Naa^a do . • • • 131 6 

45 Baatiya Tissa 2d, or Bhatika Tissa do ... . i:)7 24 

46 Choola Tissa, or Kanitlha Tissa .. do .... 16 1 18 

47 Koohoona, or Chobdda Naaga .. do..,. 179 2 

48 Koodanaama, or Kooda Naaga ....181 1 

49 Kooda Sirinaa, or Siri Naaga 1st do ... . 182 19 

60 Waiwahaira Tissa, or Waira Tissa do .... 201 22 

61 Abba Sen, or Abba Tissa do .... 2*23 8 

62SiriNaaga2d do. ...231 2 

58 Weja Indoo, or Wejaya 2d do....23i 10 

54 Sanga Tissa 1st do .... 2:J4 4 

65 DharmaSirisangaBo,orSiri- ? . .^^ o a a 

sanga Bodhi ist ^ .. do .. .. 2?i8 2 

56 Goloo Abhaa Gotabhaya, or ? . , . ^o . . . . 240 13 

Meghawarna Abhaya . • ) 

57 Makalan Detoo Tissa 1st do • • • • 253 10 

58MahaSen do ....275 27 

59 Kitsiri Maiwan 1st, or . . 7 do .... 301 28 

Keertisiri Meghawarna 3 

60 Detoo Tissa 2d • do ....330 9 

m Biya, or Badha Daasa do .... 399 IL9 

C £ Y j The Ceylon Gazetteer. 6ft 

Ko« l^veteigiu Seat of Govt. A. D» Y. M. D. 

62 Oopatissa 2d. ••.•••• • Anooradhapoora • f 36S 42 

63MahaNaama do...«410 22 

64 Senghot, or Sotthi Sena do .... 432 1 

65 Laimini Tissa 2d^ or Chatagaahaka do • . • • 482 10 

66 Mitta Sena^ or Karalsora do *... 433 10 

67 Paandu (a Malabar usurper) • • • • do • • • • 434 5 

68 PaarindaKooda do do.«..439 16 

69 KoodaPaarinda do do ....455 2 

70 Daattbiya do do..,.455 3 00 

71 Pitthiya do do. •..458 7Q^ 

72 Daasenkelliya^ or Dhaatu Sena . • • • do • • • • 450 18 

74 Moogallaana Ist. iltiooracfftapoora.. 495 18 

75 KumaaraDaas,orKu. > ^^ ^.^^ g,g g ^ q 

maara Dhaatu Sena ) 

76KirtiSena do .... 523 9 

77 Maidee Seewo, or Seewaka do • • • . 532 25 

7S Laimini Oopa Tissa 3d. • do ... • 532 160 

79 AmbaherraSalamewanorSilaakaalado .••534 13 

SO Daapuloo Ist. or Daatthaapa Bhodi do. • • • 547 6 6 

61 Dalamagalan, or Moogallaana 2d. do ••••547 20 

82 Kooda Kitsiri Maiwan 1st,, or > ,. do .•.. 567 19 

Keertisree Meghawarna • • > 

83 Senewee, or Maha Naaga* • • do • • • • 586 3 

84 Aggrabodbi Ist.chr Akbo do ...•589 34 

85 Aggvabodbi 2d., or Soola Akbo . . do . • . . 623 10 

d The Ceylon Gazetteer. [C E Y 

No. Sofereign. Seat of OoTt, A. D. T. M^ D, 

86 Sangha Tissa Anooradhapoora. . 693 2 

87 Boona Moogalan, or LaiminiBoonya do • • • • 633 6 

88 Abbaseggaabeka, or Asiggaabeka do • • . • 639 9 

89 Siri Sangabo 2d do«...648 6 

90KalooiiapetooTi8sa,or> do .... 648 60 

Laimina Katooreya 3 

91 Siri SaDgabo 2d. (restored) do .... 649 16 

92 Daleopea Tissa 1st, or Dattbopa Tissa do 6d5 12 

93 Paisooloo Kasoombo, 7 do ....677 9 

or Kaasyapa 2d. y 

94DapQloo2d do....686 7 

95 DaloopeaTissa2d^, or 7 do ....693 9 

Hattba Dattbopa Tissa ) 

96 Paisooloo Sirisangabo > do .... 702 16 

3d., or Aggrabodhi 3 

97 Walpitti Wasidatta, or Dantanaama do .... 718 2 

98 Hoonoonam Riandala Hatthadatha do .... 720 060 

99 Mahalaipauoo, or Maanawamma . . do .... 720 600 

100 Kaasiyapa 3d., or Kasoomboo . . do .... 726 300 

101 Aggrabodhi 3d., or Akbo do .... 729 40 

102 Ag|mbj)dhi 4A, orKuda } PoUonnaromoa 769 6 

103 Mibindoo 1st, or Salamaiwan .... do .... 775 20 

104 Dappoola 2d ..795 5 00 

105 Mihindoo 2d., or Dhar- j do .... 800 400 

mika Seeiamaiga . . . . i 

106 Aggrabodhi 5th, or Akbo do .... 804 11 

107 Dappoola 3d., or Kada Dappoola do.... 8 15 16 

108 Aggrabodhi 6th do .... 831 3 00 

109 Sena, or Mitwella Sen do ....838 20 9 

CEY] The Ceylon dazetteer. 66 

No, SoWnSgo. 8*at ofGort. A.Dv T. U.IX 

110 Kaasiyappa4lh,or> Poitanorooaio.. 858 83 
Maagayin Seu ) 

IllUdda;al8t do ....801 35 

XiaUddayaSd do. ...920 11 

113 KaasijappaSth do ....954 10 

114 KaasiyappaCth do.... 

115 Dappoola 4tli do .... 961 7 

lie Dappoola 5tli do. ...961 10 

117Uddaya3d do .... 971 3 

llSSenaSd do....9?7 9 

119 T}ddaya4th do.. ..986 8 

ISOSenaSd do.. ..994 3 

131 MihindooSd do ....997 16 

133SeDa4tli do ..1013 10 

133 Mihindoo4th Anooraadhapoora . . \02S 86 

laterregnam i*o/&2nnarooiai . . 1059 13 

124 Wcjaya Baboo 1st do .. 1071 53 

135 Jaya Baboo 1st do .. 1136 10 

136 Wikrama Baboo 1st do .. 1127 33 

127 Gajaa Bahod 3d do.. 30 

138 Praakrana Baboo 1st do.. 1153 83 

129 Wcjaya Baboo 2d do .. 1186 10 

130 Mihindoo .5tb, or Kitsen Kisdaas do .. 1187 5 

181 Eirti Nissaoga do .. 1193 9 

tSiWeeraBaboo do .. 1301 1 

n The Ceyhn Gazetteer. [CET 

KOi floftttigiu Scat of OowU A. 0. T. M. D, 

138 Wikrama Bahoo 2d •• • • PolUmnaroowa 1201 3 

134 Chondakanga do .. 1201 9 

135 Leelawatee (queen) •••.. do •• 1202 3 

136 Saahasamallawa do . . 1205 2 

137 Kalyaanawatee (queen) * • • do • . 1207 6 

138 Dhannaasooka do •• 1218 10 

139 Nayaayanga^ or Neekanga (usurper) • • 1214 17 

140 Leelawatee (queen, restored) • • • • do • . 1214 10 

141 Lokaiswera 1st (usurper) do .. 1215 9 

142 Leelawatee (queen, restored) .... do •• 1216 7 

143 PanditaPrakrama Ba. 7 j^ ^ . 1216 3 

hoo 2d (usurper) • • ) 

141 Maagha (a Malabar usurper) .... do •• 1219 21 

145 Wejaya Bahoo 3d Damhadeniya 1240 24 

146 Kalikaala Saahitya Sarofwajnya, ^ do • . 1267 35 
or Pandita Prakrama Bahoo 3d S 

147 Bosat Wejaya Bahoo 4th Pollannaroowa 1301 2 

148 Bhuwaneka Bahoo 1st Yapahoo \^0^ 11 

149 Prakrama Bahoo 3d«,.«« Pollannaroowa 1314 5 

150 Bhuwaneka Baboo 2d Kurungalle 13 f 9 not stated 

151 Pandita Prakrama Bahoo 4th .... do •• 

152 Wanny Bhuwaneka Bahoo 3d .... do • . 000 

153 Wejaya Bahoo 5th do.. 

154 Bhuwaneka Bahoo 4th Gampola 1347 14 

155 Prakrama Bahoo 5th do .. 1361 10 

CETj; TXie Ceylon OazetUer. 67 

Ko. Sovtarelga. Seat of Go/^ A. D. T, M. Jk 

156 Wikrama Bahoo 3d .. Partly at Kandy 187 L 7 

157 Bhuwaneka Bahoo 5th Gampofo 1378 20 

158 Wejaya Bahoo 6th, or Weera Bahoo. .do 1398 12 

159 Sree Prakrama Bahoo 6th ... . Cotta . . 1410 52 

160 Jayaa Bahoo 2d ...•«» do »• 1462 2 

161 Bhuwaneka Bahoo 6th do . . 1464 7 

1G2 Pandita Prakrama Bahoo 7th • ... do .. 1471 14 

163 Weera Prakrama Bahoo 8th .... do . . 1485 20 

164; Dbarma Prakrama Bahoo 9th .... do . . 1505 22 

165 Wejaya Bahoo 7th do .. 1527 7 

166 Bhawaneka Bahoo 7th do •• 1534 8 

167 Don Juan Dharmapaala do . . 1542 39 

168 Raja Singha 1st Seetaawaka 1581 11 

169 Wimala Dharma Kandy IS92 35 

170 Scnaaratna, or Senerat do • . 1627 7 

171 Raja Singha 2d do .. 1634 £0 

172 Wimala Dharma Surya 2d ...... do . . 1684 2200 

173 Sreeweera Prakrama Narendra ^ do.. 1706 33 

Singha^ or Koondasaala .... S 

174: Sreewijaya Raja Singha, 7 jo .. 1739 8 

or Hanguranketta .... 3 

175 Kirti Sree Raja Singha do .. 1747 33 

170 Raajaadhi Raja Singha do .. 1780 18 

177 Sree Wikrama Raja Singha 1798 17 

(Ceylon Almanac.) 

M The CeyUm OazMur. [CEY 

The Portnguese were the first Europeans who established 
a regular intercourse with Ceylon. In IdOj, Don Lorenzo 
PB Almbda, the son of the viceroy of Goa> while in pursuit 
of some Moorish vessels which were passing by the Maldives, 
was obliged to take refuge from a storm in the harbour 
of Galle ; and meeting with a hospitable reception from the 
chieftain of that province, he entered into a treaty of alliance, 
in which it was stipulated, that the Singhalese should pay to 
Emanubl, king of Portugal, an annual tribute of 250,000 lbs. 
weight of cinnamon. The new visiters soon found means to 
erect a fort at Colombo, which they formed of clay and stone. 
In 1520 they constructed fortifications of a more regular and 
solid description ; but notwithstanding this, they had very little 
influence in the country, and remained in the capacity of pri- 
vate traders, until the reign of Bhuwanbka BAHoo7th, when, 
(in consequence of dissensions in the royal family) they began 
to gain ground, and acquire political power. Engaged in 
a war with his brother Maayadunnai, who had opposed 
the succession of his daughter's son to the throne, Bhuwa*- 
KBKA Bahoo dispatched Salappoo Aratchy as ambassador 
to Portugal with a golden image of the young prince, and 
a crown of gold, begging his Portuguese majesty to place the 
crown upon the head of the image. This ceremony was accord- 
ingly performed with much pomp and magnificence in the 
great hall of Lisbon, in the year 154 1 ; and under a feigned 
pretence of supporting him and his kingdom, troops were sent 
to Ceylon with abundance of ammunition. For some time, the 
Portuguese were crowned with victory wherever they appear- 
ed; they even subjected Jafi'na, and occupied the town of 
Kandy itself. The king having been accidentally shot by 
a Portuguese gentleman, while on a water party on the Kalani 
ganga with his European friends, the Portuguese raised the 
young prince beforementioned, whom they had previously 
christened by the name of Don Juan, to the throne. This 
threw the whole island into the most disturbed state ; and 
Raja Sinha 1st., the son of Maayadunnai, succeeding him 
HI the subordinate prinoipality of Sitawaka after his deaths 

€ET] TU Ceybm tfdzeHeir. 69 

carried on fhe war with great vigour. He vanqtiished all the 
princes who opposed him ; took Cotta^ and destroyed it ; 
besieged Colombo, and redaced the Portuguese to great straits. 
After bis death, which happened in 1592, the Portuguese were 
again successful; they captured Sitawaka, possessed them- 
selves of the whole of the maritime provinces, and of a great 
part of the Seven Korles, and seemed to have a fair prospect 
of becoming masters of the whole Island. But in this they met 
with opposition from Wimala Dharma, a prince of spirit 
and ability, who had established for himself an independent 
monarchy at Kandy, Senerat, who succeeded this king by 
marrying the queen dowager Catharine, having been forced 
by the Portuguese to quit Kandy, retired to Nuwera Ellia, and 
from thence to Bintenna ; but on the retreat of the invaders 
from the capital he returned thither, and shortly afterwards 
entered into a treaty of alliance with the Dutch, with a view 
to expel the Portuguese entirely. They soon succeeded in 
fulfilling the desire of the king, by driving the Portuguese from 
the places they had fortified, and possessed for a hundred 
and fifty years. In I CSS they reduced Batticalo ; in lf)40. 
Point de Galle; in 1644, Negombo; and 1656, Colombo. 
But in spite of all good faith, they rendered themselves abso- 
lute masters of the possessions they had wrested from the 
Portuguese, and began to mock at the king, whose authority 
became confined to the interior, and who perceived too late 
that he had contributed to raise up hitnself a more inveterate, 
subtile, active, and powerful enemy in the Dutch ; with whom 
he henceforth contended on terms of open war, or secret hosti- 
lity. In 1761 the Dutch contemplated the subjection of the 
whole Island ; and accordingly invading the interior, pos- 
sessed themselves of Kandy ; but so many of their troops fell 
victims to the climate, that they were soon compelled to re- 
treat to the coast 

During the war with the French in 1782, the British took 
possession of Trincomalee, but it was shortly after retaken by 
the French fleet, commanded by Mons. Sufprein; and the 
Ma coast remained in the hands of the Dutch until 1796, 

72 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [C E Y 

The neighbouring country abounds with many excellent paddy 
fields in a high state of cultivation. 

In the immediate vicinity of the Pettah there is an ex- 
tensive manufacture of coarse cloth, napkins, and towels, 
carried on by a class of weavers who emigrated in 1*92 
from the Coromandel coast, to whom the Dutch governor 
Vander Graaf granted in perpetuity a large tract of ground, 
planted with cocoanut trees, originally belonging to count 

The river of Chilaw formerly extended only as far as 
Madampe, but a canal has been since excavated to unite it 
with the Kaymel, and is now navigable to Colombo. 

No mention is made of Chilaw in the early periods of the 
Singhalese history, and therefore we may conclude that it 
was originally but an obscure village, forming part of the 
royal domains of the king of Madampe. In the time of 
Taniwella Bahoo (Tamwalla Abhaya) who was the 
last that reigned at Madampe, an attempt was made by 
the Moors to form a settlement at Chilaw, and accordingly 
their chieftain anchored in the bay with a large fleet and 
army. In this however they did not succeed ; for the above 
king, in concert with his brother Sakalla walla Abhaya, 
attacked them in their landing, totally routed their forces, and 
killed the chieftain. The Dutch took possession of Chilaw 
in 1766, and being confirmed in the same by the treaty which 
they subsequently concluded with the court of Kandy, they 
retained it, with their other settlements on the Island, till IT96, 
when they surrendered it to the English. In Ib03, when 
hostilities were carried on between the last king of Kandy 
and the English, a considerable body of Kandyans, under the 
celebrated ^digrar Mio a STiENN a, crossed the British frontiers, 
penetrated into the town of Chilaw, and on the 27th of 
August completely besieged the fort. They continued the siege 
only for a short time ; for then being apprized of the march of 
Major Blackall with a detachment of troops from Negombo, 
they abruptly evacuated the place in the nighty and inarched 

COL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 73 

off to their own territories, where they joined the expedition 
which the king was then preparing i'or his intended invasion of 
Colombo. ( Cordiner.) 

Colombo, the capital and seat of the British government in 
Ceylon, is situated on the north west coast in 6" 57' north 
latitude, and 80** east longitude, and 'My^ miles south west of 
Madras. It is a commonly received opinion that the name 
was derived from a mango tree (of that species which the 
Singhalese call ColambaX which stood conspicuous at this 
place in olden time. Knox adds, that the Portuguese in 
compliment to Columbus, the celebrated navigator, changed 
it to Coiumbo, or Colombo. This etymology is. however, 
inadmissible; for in the Singhalese Grammar " Siddhartha 
Saugraha,*' the word CoUzmba is explained as signifying 
" a seaport,*' and also " a fort ; " and in the former sense 
it seems to have been applied to the metropolis of the 
Island, from its maritime situation. The Fort of Colombo 
is situated on a small projection of land washed by the 
sea^ about two- thirds of its extent. Though not very ex- 
tensive, it is strong, both by art and nature, and embraces 
a circuit of nearly a mile and a quarter. The ramparts 
are very strong, having eight principal bastions, and a number 
of lesser ones with curtains, banquets, and parapets com- 
municating one with the other all round. At the foot of the 
ramparts, on the inside, is a broad way, which extends round 
the whole Fort, and communicates with the bastions and 
soldiers' barracks, and also affords, at the different angles, 
open spaces for their private parades. The whole of the 
Fort is surrounded (except that side which is next the sea) by 
a deep ditch or fosse, and adjoining the covert way, and at 
the foot of the glacis, is a lake having communication with the 
Mutwal river. In the interior of the Fort are several straight 
and regular streets, with smaller ones crossing at right 
angles; the former being ornamented with double rows of 
sooria trees, which afford a delightful shade. The residence 
of the governor^ called the '' King's House/' is in King street 

74 J%e Ceylon Gazetteer. [COL 

and behind it id the Lightbonse,— a beautiful edifice of late 
erection,— the light of which is 97 feet above the level of the 
sea, and in clear weather may be seen as far as the light 
is visible above the horizon. All the military oflSces^ as well as 
those of the Colonial Secretary, the Commissioner of Revenue^ 
the High Court of Appeal, the Vice Admiralty Court, with 
the General Post Office, are within the Fort;— there are, 
besides, an English Church, styled St. Peter's, a Library, a 
Medical Museum, an Hospital, two Hotels, and numerous 

The lake at the back of the Fort, before alluded to, almost 
insulates the town— connected as it is, with the Mutwal 
river by canals ; and a lock having been formed at St Sebas- 
tian^s, the inland navigation is carried through the Fort 
to the sea beach. In the centre of the lake is a tongue 
of land, denominated Slave Island, from the use to which 
it was applied by the Dutch. It is numerously covered with 
cocoanut and other trees, which afford an excellent shadot 
That part nearest to the Fort, is very cool, being only sepa- 
rated from the sea by an isthmus, usually called the Galle 
face. Communication from this place with either the town or 
the Fort is very easy by land, passing over a very pretty little 
stone bridge, which opens to the south end of the Galle face, 
near the village of Colpetty, or by boats which cross the lake 
in all seasons. Slave Island is the head quarters of the 
Ceylon Rifle regiment, and there are some tolerably good 
houses, usually occupied by the officers of this regiment 

Colombo has a small harbour, in the form of a semicircle, 
but it is not capable of admitting vessels exceeding 200 tons ; 
ships therefore of larger burden are anchored in the roads. 
During the prevalence of the South West monsoon (from 
April to October) the best anchorage is found in from 7 to 8 
fathoms, with the Lighthouse bearing south by east | east, 
and the Dutch Church east by south ; and in the North East 
monsoon (from November to April) it is more convenient to 
anchor in 6| fathoms, the Lighthouse bearing south, or south 
i east, and the Dutch Church east south east 

COL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 75 

The Town, or Pettah of Colombo, is regularly built, and 
divided into fifteen streets, of which eight run east and west, 
and the others cross them at right angles. Each street has its 
particular name, which is generally notified in a conspicuous 
manner at the corner. The houses are built of cabook, and 
neatly whitewashed with chunam ; some of them have two 
stories, and all are lofty, and present rather a good ap- 
pearance. In 1814 the number of tiled houses within the 
Gravets, was estimated at 'iH54. By virtue of a Regulation, 
No. 5, of \^20, an assessment was imposed for lighting and 
repairing the streets ; the amount collected from 1820 to 1829, 
was 6542/., of which 2140/. was laid out at interest, with 
the view to accumulate a fund : and by the Regulation, No. 8, 
of 1830, it is arranged that four fifths of the amount collected 
shall be applied to the lii^hting and repairs, and one fifth 
to be added annually to the accumulating fund, to be lent out 
at interest under the direction of a committee. When the 
interest amounts to 1200/., per annum the tax is to cease. 

Among the public buildings may be named the Supreme 
Court House, the offices of the Provincial Judge, Magistrate, 
and Fiscal, a Jail, and a Cutcherry where the Collector of 
the District transacts business ; but none of them merit parti- 
cular notice. There is also a Library belonging to the 
Burghers, a Smallpox Hospital, a Masonic Hall, two Thea- 
tres, and a number of religious edifices. The Wolfendhal 
Church (usually called the Dutch Church) erected by the Dutch 
governor Gollbnessb, in the year 1746, is a lofty building in 
the form of a cross, and stands on a hill in the centre of the 
town. It belongs to the Presbyterians, who are chiefly des- 
cendants of the Dutch, and has an excellent organ ; but there 
is so powerful an echo in the building, that the words of the 
preacher are almost unintelligible. By order of Sir Robert 
Brown RiGo, the remains of several Dutch governors, who had 
been interred in the Fort, were removed, with every mark of 
respect, and deposited in this church. The Malabar Epis- 
copalian Church, called St. Thomas's, stands likewise on a hill 
near the Chitty's quarter^ the front facing the sea. It is a neat 

76 Hie Ceylon Gazetteer. [COL 

baildingfy erected by Sir Robbrt Brownrigg ; and to this was 
added, principally at the expense of his pious lady, a commo- 
dioas school room for the use of the children belonging to that 
class of inhabitants. The church was first opened for divine 
service on the 28th of July, 1816. St. Paul's Church, which 
bel<)ngs to the Portuguese protestants, is a neat structure near 
Kayman's gate, and was opened on the fst of September iSl6, 
having been built by subscription, chiefly through the zeal of the 
late Archdeacon, Dr. Twislbton. In the quarter occupied 
by the Washermen, stands their church ; and besides this, 
there are several other places of worship in the suburbs of the 
town, belonging: to the established religion. There are nume- 
rous chapels belonging to the Roman catholics, the Wesleyan 
Methodists, and the Baptists. The principal chapel for the 
Roman catholics is situated in the suburbs, and is called St. 
Lucia. The Vicar-general resides here, and the annual confer- 
ence is held on the 15th of August, when the Missionaries (who 
belong to the congregation of the Order of St. Philip Neri 
of 6oa) are changed from one station to another. The 
Wesleyan chapel is about a mile from the Fort, and in form an 
amphitheatre (after the model of the Brunswick chapel at 
Liverpool), with three rows of elevated seats nearly all round. 
It is finished in that style of neatness and simplicity, suitable 
to a Missionary place of worship, and is capable of accommo- 
dating from five to six hundred auditors;— it was opened on 
the 226 of December 1816. The Hindoos have two temples, 
one in the Silversmith's quarter, and another in Sea street, 
but they are neither splendid nor richly endowed, as on the 
continent of India. The Mahometan mosque at Marandhan 
presents an appearance of grandeur, but the one in the Moor's 
quarter greatly exceeds it in splendour, having a beautiful 
minaret in front. 

There are several bazars, or market places, for fish, flesh, 
fruits, garden herbs, &c. There are also two steam engines, and 
several native presses used for manufacturing cocoanut oil. 

The population of Colombo is composed of Europeans^, 
Burghers, Malabars, Singhalese and Moors, besides some 

COLJ The Ceylon Gazetteer. 77 

Malays, Chinese, Parsees, Caffrees, and Pattanys. The number 
has been exagp:erated by difl'erent authors;— Pbrgival and 
CoRDiNER reckoned it in 1804 at bi)^^^^ and M'Culloch, 
adopting this estimate, supposes it now to amount to 60,000; 
but by a table published in the Colombo Journal in 1833, the 
actual number is fixed at '^lySlP only. 

The commerce of Colombo, both external and internal, is 
very extensive, and daily increasing. The exports to Europe, 
are cinnamon, pepper, cofiee, cocoanut oil, plumbago, cordage, 
arrack, cardamums, elephant tusks, deer horns, tortoise shells, 
ebony, satinwood, &c ; and the imports are cotton piece 
goods, flannel, hosiery, hats, wine, beer, brandy » hams, salt pro- 
visions, confectionary, perfumery, chocolate, preserves, snufi^, 
earthenware, cutlery, glassware, ironmongery, stationary, paint, 
oilman'.^ stores, medicines, and, in short, every thing of Euro- 
pean manufacture. The exports to the British colonies consist 
of arrack, coffee, arekanuts, copperahs, cocoanuts, hookah 
shells, coir, nipera laths, bicho de mar, shark fins^ fish oil, &c. ; 
in return for which are imported rice, paddy, wheat, cloth, 
silk, sugar, spices, drugs, &c. &c. A. trade is carried on with 
the interior, both by land and water ; the Kalani ganga being 
navigable for a considorable distance from its mouth. By 
this source great quantities of goods are at first received, and 
afterwards dispersed throngh the country. Some intercourse 
is carried on with the Maldive l8lands, but the cargo of the 
prows which arrive from thence chiefly consist of cumblemas. 

The District dependent on Colombo embraces an area of 
1472 square miles, with 20:3,242 inhabitants; of whom 65,193 
are employed in agriculture, (iO(>0 in manufactures, and I0,3b8 
in commerce. There were formerly many slaves, the greater 
part of them however have been manumitted by their masters, 
and the number of those who have not yet shared this benefit, 
amounts only to 267. 

The climate of Colombo is considered very salubrious : the 
air is at all times pure and healthy, and the mean daily 
variation of the temperature is from Tti* to 80^* Farenheit. 
Bain often falls in torrents, and is generally accompanied 
with dreadful storms of thunder and lightning. 

78 The CeyUm Gazetteer. [COL 

Colombo is mentioned in Singhalese history as early as 
the year 49S» of the Christian era. Moooallaana, who after- 
wards reigned at Anooraadhapoora, is said to have landed here 
with an army from tfte continent, and erected a fort. About 
the year 1:)7I, it was frequented by trading vessels; and a 
colony of Malabars, under Aarya Cuakrawarti, tools pos- 
session of the place and threw up fortifications, but they were 
soon expelled from it by the minister Alakaisswara, who 
founded the city of Cotta (see Cotta) in the neighbourhood. 
The Portuguese did not visit Colombo until I5IH, in which 
year their general (L^pkz Suaar Alva renga) arrived with a 
fleet of nineteen ships, and after some ineffectual opposition 
from the Singhalese, erected a fort, and forced king Dharma 
Prakrama Bahoo 9th, then reigning at Cotta, to submit; 
and also bind himself to pay an annual tribute of l;^0,tMO, 
or as some will have it, '25(),000Ibs. of cinnamon to king 
Emanuel. Soon after, the Singhalese roused to resentment 
by the tyranny of the Portuguese, assembled an army of 20,000 
men, invested the fort, and kept it in a state of siege for 
the space of five months; but the Portuguese receiving 
succours from Goa, proved victorious, finally dispersed the 
enemy, and compelled the king to sue for peace. The first 
fort which the Portuguese erected at Colombo, was composed 
of clay and stone ; but in 1520 they constructed fortifications 
of a more regular and solid kind, which however they demo- 
lished in L524, according to orders which had been received 
from Portugal ; and instead of a military station, formed only 
a factory, in which they left a factor, a secretary, and fifteen 
men to carry on their mercantile concerns. A Moorish chieftain 
informed of this reduction in the establishment of the Portu- 
guese at Colombo, made an attempt to take the place by 
stratagem, and to carry off those who had been left in charge 
of the factory; but meeting with an unfavorable reception 
from the king, he abandoned the undertaking, and returned to 
the Malabar coast, from whence he had come. On the repre- 
sentation of these circumstances to the court of Portugal, 
reiaforcements were sent to Colombo^ and a new fort being 

COT] Tha Ceylon Gazetteer. 79 

erected in liea of that which had t>een demolished, the Porta* 
gaese established themselves firmly at the place; and by taking 
part in the contests between the king Bhuwenb&a B\HQo7th 
and his brother Maaya Dunnai, obtained quiet possession 
of the place, and extended their influence gradually over 
the whole Island. In 165G the Dutch wrested it from the 
Portuguese after a siege of seven months^ and expelled them 
from the coast, and it remained in their hands until 1796, 
when they surrendered it to the English under Col. S fewart 
and Capt, Hvde Gardner, R. N. (Cor diner, Philalethes, 
Hamilton, 2fc. l^c.J 

Colombogam is situated on the northern bank of a large 
river or arm of the sea, being the landing place of travellers 
from Colombo and other southern stations on their way to 
Jaffna, It is •)! miles distant from Kalmoony, the river being 
crossed in canoes. 

Condachy, a village about 4 miles south of A rrippo, situated 
on a semicircular bay of the same name, remarkable only for 
the extensive pearl fishery which is carried on there. Being 
almost a barren spot, with a small bazar composed of cadjan 
huts, and a bungalow belonging to the Markar of Killekarre, 
it has nothing of an inviting feature, except during the 
season of the fishery ; when it exhibits ^' the commercial bustle 
of a great mart, and all the combined amusements of a fair on 
the largest scale," ( Philalethes.J 

Cottiar (Cottiarum), a small province of Trincomalee, 
extending along the east coast of the Island from the north 
bank of the Virgel ganga to the frontiers of Tambalagam. It 
is about 27 miles long from north east to south west, and 15 
miles broad from east to west. It contains 28 villages, and 
according to the census of 1814, a population of 1757 souls ; of 
which two thirds are Malabars, and the remainder Moors. 
The country, from Anetivoe to Topore is almost level, diversi- 
fied with extensive plains, interspersed with thick jungles, 
and intersected by several nullahs, most of which are fordable ; 

80 The Ceylon Gazetteer. fCOT 

bat from Topore to the north ward, it assumes an elevated 
aspect, and abounds with hii^h rocks an<1 hills. The soil is 
generally sandy. The low lands yield fine crops of paddy, 
and the high grounds all the varieties of dry grain. The 
forests supply almost all sorts of timber, and harbour a vast 
number of wild animals, amongst which elephants prove a 
great pest to the inhabitants. 

This province was originally the hereditary domain of a 
female chieftain styled Wannichee ; and one of her descendants 
still nominally presides over it -.--her husband is allowed to 
bear the title of Assistant or Adjutant Wanniya. In 1612, by 
a treaty concluded between the i^ing of Kandy and the Dutch, 
the latter obtained permission to erect a fort in the province. 
After the departure of Boschouder, the head of their estab- 
lishment, to the coast of Coromandel, the garrison was 
surprised by the Portuguese, and cruelly massacred. They 
were, however, not allowed to occupy the place, for as 
soon as the king heard of the event, be sent a large army and 
drove off the invaders with great slau:^hter, and resumed the 
possession of the province. In 1785 the Dutch retook it 
from the Kandyans, and held it till the surrender of their 
settlements to the British arms. In 1803 Pan da r a Wannia, 
the famous rebel chief, took possession of the province ; but it 
was almost iramodiately recovered by the light company of 
H, M. 19th regiment, which had been detached for that 
purpose from Trincomalee. (Cordiner.) 

Cottiar^ the principal villas:e of the above province, situated 
on the south side of the inner harbour of Trincomalee, 
was anciently a place of some importance; and Knox states 
that at the time he was residing in the interior, it was 
frequented every year by twenty or thirty sail of small vessels 
from the opposite coast, and the customs derived from it, 
formed a considerable part of the king's revenue. It is very 
populous, occupied by Malabars, and the country around is 
well cultivated ; cattle abound, and the pasture is extremely 
good, it is remarkable in the Singhalese history as the 

COT] The Ceylon Gazettes. %i^ 

port where the princess, who afterwards became the wife of 
WiJAY<^^ landed from Madura with her numerous attendants. 
( Philalethes. ) 

Cotta (Jaywvardhnapoora), one of the capitals of the 
kings of Ceylon, which stood in the vicinity of the present 
villasre of the same name, about (5 miles east of Colombo. 
Accordinsr to the Sinirhalese annals, i^ was founded in the 
reign of the king Wikrama Bahoo :Jd by his minister 
Al\kaiswara, and he is said to have built it all of strong 
blue stone, with a splendid palace of the same materials, 
containing Wihares in honour of Budha, and monasteries for 
the priests. In 1410, when Sreb Prakrama Bahoo 6th 
ascended the throne, he removed the seat of government from 
GamptJa to this city, and made it the capital of the Island. 
After his death Jaya Bahoo 2d succeeded him, but shortly 
afterwards BhuwaneraBahoo Gth, a descendant of the royal 
family, settled at Yapahoo, disputed his title, and raising aa 
army against him^ defeated his forces in the field, took the city 
by treachery, and seized on the throne. He was followed by 
his adopted son Pandita Prakrama Bahoo 7th, who 
reigned fourteen years. Weera Prakrama Bahoo 8th 
succeeded to the dignity, and to him followed in succession 
Dharma Prakrama Bafioo 9th, and Wejaya Bahoo 7th. 
During the reign of the latter king, through the machinations of 
his queen, his three sons, by a former consort, were compelled 
to retire from court; but after some time, they obtained a 
large force from Jayaweera, king of Udaratta, marched 
against Cotta, which was soon reduced, and after causing an 
obscure individual, named Salama, to murder their father, 
one of them ascended the throne under the title of Bhu- 
wanaka Bahoo 7th. He entered into a treaty with the 
Portuguese for securing the succession to the throne to his 
grandson Dharma Paala, which occasioned a feud between 
him and his brother Maaya Dunnai, who was king of 
Sitawaka ; and the latter calling in the aid of the Moors from 
jthe opposite coast^. besieged Cotta ; but the enterprise was 


B2 The Ceylon Gazetteer. f C O T 

rendered abortive, by the vigorous opposition of the Portu* 
gnese. He once more renewed the attempt when the Porta- 
gaese had placed Dharma. Paala on the throne, after the 
death of Bhuw anfka Bahoo ; but he was again vanquished^ 
and forced to quit the field. Raja Singha 1st, the son 
and successor of Maaya Dunnai, who followed up the 
contest, shortly afterwards compelled Dharma Paala to 
abandon Cotta, which was allowed gradually to sink into 
obscurity, and the seat of government was transferred to 
Sitawaka, and from thence to Kandy. 

The present village consists of a long street, bordered oa 
either side by plantations of cocoanut, areka, coffee, and jack 
trees, entwined with pepper and betel vines. Like other Sin- 
ghalese villages, the houses are scattered amongst the topes. 
The object in the place that attracts most notice is the CHRrs- 
TIAN Institutii>n, uudcr the Church Missionaries, in which a 
number of Singhalese and Malabar youths receive instruction 
in the Hebrew, Greek, Latin, and English Langua^s, the 
Uathematics, and Theology, with a view, chiefly, to their be- 
coming instructors of their countrymen, under the superintend- 
ence of the Missionaries. Its situation is extremely pleasant 
on the banks of a river, which furnishes a water communication 
to Colombo, and the buildings are very neat and handsome. 
Here there is a cbrtpel, and the Missionaries display un- 
common zeal in promoting the diffusion of religious koow- 
ledge amoug the natives. 

A Printing office is attached to this station, from which 
an infinite number of tracts and other works is issued, in 
Singhalese and Euirlish; two publications are also printed 
monthly —one entitled " The Colombo Religious and Theolo* 
gical Magazine,*' and the other •* The Tyro's Repertory of 
Useful Knowledge^'* 

At a small distance from the Mission Premises, stands 
a Wihare, enclosed by a low mud wall, and having a Dagoba 
of some magnitude near the gate-way. it is a small building, 
apparently of no great antiquity; bat is remarkable for a 

DAM] The Ceylon Gazttteet. 8d 

colossal figure of BunHA, wbich u placed en a raised terrace 
ia a recmnbeDt posture. 


Ddlugama, a yillasre of Ulna Korle^ in the province of Adi« 
karipattoo» pleasantly situated on the banks of the Kalani 
gan^a» 7 miles north east from Colombo. It is very populous^ 
and has a church dedicated to St. Francis of Sales^ which 
is highly venerated. 

Dambadiniya^ once a royal residence^ and capital of the 
Muaya division of the Island, now an insignificant place. It 
stands in a very picturesque valley, which is terminated by 
ranges of lofty naked hills, rising perpendicularly in a variety 
of peaked forms^ about 27 miles south of Kumagalle, and ;>6 
east of Colombo. In the year 1219, when Maagha invaded 
the Island from Kalinga, (conquered the whole of it, and put 
out the eyes of the king Pandi Pra&rama Bahoo 2d,) a 
descendant of Srkb Sangaro 1st, named Wbjaya Bahoo, 
disguised as a priest, took refuge in the neighbourhood of 
Dambadiniya, buc after an interval of twenty one years he 
drove the invader away, and in 124'^ made this place hid 
capital. It retained this distinction only for a period of fifty 
nine years, when Bosat Wbjaya Bahoo 4th, who ascended 
the throne in 1301, transferred the seat of government > to 
Pullonnaroowa, and allowed the former to dwindle into 
obscurity. The kings who resided here, appear to have en« 
couraged the culrivation of useful arts and sciences amongst 
their subjects, and possessed a large collection of valuable 
books of medicine in their public library. 

In 1803 a small fort was built by the British on the top 
of one of the hills, and a detachment of one hundred men left 
in it, under Ensign Grant. After the massacre of Major 
Bavie's troops at Kandy, the Kandyans blockaded thii 
fert, and summoned the garrison, which then consisted only 
<fl4iaen of the i9th regiment and S2 Malay invalidi»y t4 

84 The Ceylon Gazetteer. I'D ED 

garrender ; but the summons was bravely and stoutly rejected^ 
and the little garrison held out for ten days against the 
attacks of the cnemy^ when it was finally relieved by succours 
from Colombo. 

This spot will ever occupy a conspicuous place in the 
annals of Ceylon, as the one where the Earl of Guilford 
admitted Pilimi Tala wa (the wily prime minister of the last 
king of Kandy) to a personal conference on the 3d of May 
180*3 ; and, as it afterwards appeared, narrowly escaped a plot 
to secure his person during the interview. (Cjrdiner, Davy, 
Philaleihes^ i^c.J 

Dambool, a village and rest house in the province of Matele, 
situated on the road from Kandy to Anooraadbapoora, about 
16 miles in a direction nearly north from Nalande. 

In the immediate vicinity of this village stands a hill of 
considerable size, entirely formed of granite, which rises per- 
pendicularly to the height of upwards of 6^ feet. It is noted 
for a Wihare, which is formed from the parts of a vast cavern 
on the south side ; the principal chamber is full 60 yards 
in length, by *}0 in breadth, and from 10 to 24 feet in height, 
the whole beautifully painted, and containing gftytwo large 
upright figures of BuDH A : there are several other apartments 
of smaller dimensions, equally well painted and ornamented. 
In 1817 the British troops, who had been sent to quell the 
rebellion which broke out in Matele, were quartered in the 
above Wihare for a few months, and the strictest orders 
were issued against doing any injury to it; its situation, 
however, being ill calculated for a military post, it was given 
up to the priests, and the troops removed to a more eligible 
part of the country. (Ceylon Gazette.) 

Deduro Oya, a considerable river which rises in the moun- 
tains of Tumpane, and after pursuing a meandering course 
through the Seven Korles, where it receives many tributary 
streams, discharges itself into the sea two miles north of 
^hilaw. Its flow and ebb are so uncertain and abrupt;, tb^t 

B E M"| Tke Ceylon Gazetteer. 85 

it has received from the Malabars the name of Maayawen^aar, 
or the river of Maayawa, one of the titles of Vishnu in 
the character of *' Deluder" 

Delft, a small Island off the northwest coast of Ceylon, 
which is, accordins^ to Rennell, iO Germcin miles west of Point 
Calymere, and tiS/ east of Tondi. Latitude 9** •jS* north ; longi- 
tude 79M6^ east. In the old charts it has been called " Ilha 
da Vacasy' or "the Cow's Island," but its original name 
is ** Neduntivoe" or ** the Long Island." It is abont 8 miles 
long, by H broad, and is entirely surrounded by a large coral 
reef. The north and west sides are occupied by inhabitants, 
amounting to 2947 ; but the remainder has for many yeari^t 
been reserved for government purposes. There seems to be a 
great scarcity of water, and the Dutch had about 400 wells 
dug through a body of solid rock at the south side, to obtain 
a good supply of this necessary article. It possesses no 
natural harbours, but a small and secure one was formed 
on the north, by blasting through the coral reef. A fort 
was erected by the Dutch on a small esplanade close to the 
sea, but which is now mouldered into ruin. This Island 
vi^as appropriated by the British, as well as the preceding 
governments, for the breeding of horses; and till lately an 
extensive stud was kept up. There are here abundance of 
cattle, generally of a good description, having been crossed 
with a fine breed imported from Surat, (Colombo JournaL) 

Dembahagalle, a hill situated about 8 miles to the right of 
Pereatory, called, by European mariners, the Gunner's Quoin. 
It is supposed to be between li and 4,000 feet in height^ 
and is mentioned by Captain Anubrson as having its top 
constantly veiled by clouds. In March 1832, it was as- 
cended by Mr. Brook R, and he represents himself to have 
been rewarded for all his toils by a most splendid view of 
the country, including the chapel point at Trincomalee, Batti- 
calo lake, the hills beyond Minery,^nd the Kandyau hills. 

About 16 miles east of this hill there is a spring, which 
jrlM» three or foor feet above ground, and is surrounded by a 

86 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [DIK 

cauldron 25 yards in diameter, consisting of very soft mud^ 
from which issues a warm and a cold stream. (Colombo 

DemelepattoOf a small district formerly belonging to the 
Seven Kurles, but now included in the coUectorship of Chilaw, 
along the eastern borders of which it extends. It comprehends 
eight distinct patroos, the names of which, and the population^ 
are exhibited in the following return for tSM : 

Pandita Pattoo 987 

Kirimettiya Pattoo 952 

Karamba Pattoo ••.••••• 531 

Peruwiili Paitoo 831 

Monesscram Pattoo • • • •« • • 289 

Anewuluhdan Pattoo •••••••••••••• 192 

Kumarawduni Pattoo .••••• .• .• •• 435 

Rajawaniii Pattoo •••••• • • 285 

The district is diversified with large plains and forests. It 
possesses an extremely fertile soil, yielding a considerable 
quantity of paddy and fine grain, of which government exacts 
tithe on the former only, and receives it into the stores at 
Chilaw and Putlam. 

In very early times the district was exclusively governed by 
Malabar chiefs, hence its name '* Demelepaftoo/' or *' the 
Malabar province;'' but afterwards their authority was re- 
stricted to the last two divisions, and the rest placed under 
a Singhalese Mohattale, which office however is now extinct, 
being superseded by the appointment of a Modliar, since 
the coni|uest of the Island by the British. 

Dharmarajagalf a steep rock on the road from Ratnapoora 
to Adam's Peak. It is ascended by \'17 steps, cut horizontally 
on the face of the rock ; and has on the left a rudely sculptured 
representation of a pilgrim in an attitude of devotion. (Co- 
lombo Journal) 

DikweUe, a village of Matura, in the province of Wellebod- 
4epattoo^ about 11 miles south ewi ton Tftngalle* It has a 

D O O] The Ceyhn Gazetteer. 87 

tolerably good rest hoase, with a school adjoining to it: the 
inhabitants amount to a considerable number. 

DiwurungaUif a large rock on Ihe spot where the limits 
of the Demelepattoo terminate^ and those of the Medapattoo 
commence. Its name is cmiposed of a Singhalese com- 
ponnd, signifying '^ the tock of conjuration," and is said 
to have been bestowed on it from the circumstance of the 
chieftains of the two districts having met there, and bound 
themselves by a solemn oath never to encroach on each 
other's territories, or to commit any acts of violence, 

DodenweUe^ a small village 7 miles south west of Kandy^ 
remarkable for its Wihares and majestic avenues of trees. 
The soil is very productive in paddy, and cinnamon also 

Dondra Head (Dewandere, the Island's end), the southern 
extremity of the sland, situated in latitude 5*50' north, and 
longitude 80* 40* east. It is supposed to ha^e been once 
the site of a very extensive city, called Devi Nmoera, inhabited 
by Hindoos ; and the numerous remains of temples and other 
kinds of buildings peculiar to them f which are still to be seen 
on the spot), establish such a supposition beyond all doubt. 
It has at present a small Wihare^ which is reckoned to possess 
such peculiar sanctity in the opinions of the Singhalese, that 
the festival which takes place there at the full moon in the 
month of July, is attended by thousands from all parts of 
the Island. 

At some distance from the ruins there is a neat village of 
the same name, almost covered with cocoanut trees, and 
having about 900 inhabitants. Here there is a school belonging 
to the Wesleyan Missionaries. {Philalethes, Cordiner, i^c) 

Doodendoowe, a seaport village, situated on the Colombo 
road, about 8 miles from Galle. It has a custom house, and is 
tlie.etaition of an assistant collector ot customs. The nume- 
xoM groves of cocoanut trees with which it abounds, enable 

88 T%e Ceylon Gazetteer^ fD O O 

tiie inhabitants to carry on a lacrative trade in their various 
productions. Here there is a school belonging to the Wes- 
leyan Missionaries^ besides a small church for the Roman 

Doombera, a district in the province of Udaratta^ which 
is divided into two parts ; namely, the Lower and the Upper 
Doombera. This district is separated from Kandy by the 
Mahawelli ^angfa, and is a most beautiful country of hill and 
dale. During the rebellion it was the focus of the discon- 
tented chieftains and their adherents, and the inhabitants 
shewed such an obstinacy in the cause they had espoused^ 
that had it not been for the strenuous exertions of Colonel 
Hardy it would have taken a much longer time to produce a 
•omplete submission among them. 


EkeUe, a village of Ragampattoo, in the Alutkoor Korle, 
situated about 3 miles from the Jayelle rest house^ on the road 
to Kandy. It possesses some extensive plantations of cinna- 
mon, and is the seat of a Modiiar of that department. The 
population is tolerably numerous, and a school has been 
erected by the Wesleyan Missionaries. 

Eludumatwal, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Tenmarachy. It produces large crops of paddy and fine 
grain, and the population amounts to 2710. It was taken 
by the Dutch with the other parishes, and during the time 
it remained in their hands the elephants belonging to the 
company were kept here, previous to their exportation to the 
continent. The village has a market which is held on Thurs- 
days, and attracts a great assemblage of people. 

Erdoor, a village in the province of the same name, situated 
t)n the high road to Trincomalee^ 9 miles northwest from 

ETU] I%e Ceylon Gazetteer. 89 

Batticalo. It has a ^ood rest house, and a temple sacred 
to " Vira Badra" one of the mali«:nant deities in Hindoo 
mythology. There is a small manufacture of cotton stuff, 
and the inhabitants are composed of Malabars and Moors. 
The country around is sandy and barren, and the water 
generally indifferent. 

Erroopasse, a village in the Lower Uwa, situated on the 
road from BaduUa to Hambautotte, 11 miles east of Bootella. 

Erukalampitty, a large and populous village, in the island of 
Manaar, situated on the edge of the sea, about two miles west 
of the town of that name. The inhabitants are all Moors, 
who, besides fishing for chanks, carry on a irade with the 
interior, and also manufacture a coarse sort of cotton cloth. 
The houses, with a few exceptions, are built of mud, and 
covered with olas. In consequence of the sterility of the 
soil, very little time or attention has been bestowed on 

Eroowil, a village in the province of the same name, situated 
on the west side of the lake of Batticalo. The houses are 
built of mud, and thatched in the usual manner, and there 
is a temple sacred to ^* Kaimdhe** of the same humble materials, 
whose fame, however, has rendered the place of some note, 

Etaly^ a village in the province of Akkarapattoo, situated 
on the gulf of Calpentyn, north west of Putlam. It has a 
small Roman catholic church, but few inhabitants, and carries 
on some trade in cadjans and coir rope. 

Etugalle (Elephant rock), one of the hills in the neighbour- 
hood of Kurnagalle, so called from a fancied resemblance of 
its outline to that of an elephant It rises nearly perpendi- 
cular about 600 feet above the level of the plain, and being 
composed of solid granite, has been alluded to in most of the 
Sannas (or, letters patent) granted in ancient times, as a sym- 
bol of eternity. At the west end of this hill the kings of 


90 The CeyUm Gazetteer. {TOR 

Karnagalle had a palace, and it was from its summit^ that the 
Moorifih usurper Vasthimi was thrown down by his ministers, 
and killed. 


Fort HammanheiU a small fort situated on a rock in the 
harbour of Kaits, at the distance of a few hundred yards from 
the shore. It is entirely built of coral stone, has a reservoir 
for water, and was until lately occupied as a state prison. 

Fort King, a military post, and station of the officer com- 
manding the Four Korles^ situated about 2H miles south west 
Of Kandy, on the old road to Colombo. It is called Attapittiya 
by the Singhalese ; but the present name was given to it, from 
the circumstance of Captain King having planned and super- 
intended the works. The fort stands on the top of a steep hill, 
and commands the ferry of the Maha oya, which glides along in 
the neighbourhood, in its progress to the coast. It is elevated 
63 L feet above the level of the sea, and possesses a very 
agreeable climate ; while the surrounding country displays a 
high degree of vegetable luxuriance* The village, which is 
contiguous to the fort, is tolerably populous, and the bazar is 
abundantly supplied with provisions. (Davy.) 

Fort McDonald, a militar}' post, and station of an officer, is 
situated in the valley of Parunagamme, at the foot of the 
barrier mountains of Upper Uwa, and immediately under the 
pass of the Dodanatukapala, which rises more than 6,000 feet 
above the level of the sea. The fort stands on a low hill, and 
received its name in compliment to Major McDonald, who 
made a remarkable stand with 600 men for eight days, on 
a hill in the neiiihbonrhood, during the rebellion, against a 
body of 7 or 8000 Kandyan.s assembled under Kappittipola. 
Travelling distance from Kandy (by the old road) 41 miles; 
from Toopittia i miles ; from Badulla 19 miles ; and from 
Nuwera Ellia 10 miles* (Ceylon Gazette. J 

FOR] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 91 

Fort IPDowall, a military post, and principal station of the 
officer commanding Matele and the east part of Nuwera- 
kalawe. It is situated in the province of Matele, about 4 miles 
from the foot of the pass at Kallalpittya> and is called by the 
natives Pannagamme. It received the present name, and was 
fixed upon as a post, in the former wars ; but was subsequently 
abandoned to the Kandyans, and re-occupied by the British 
in the late rebellion. It has a populous neighbourhood, with 
a very extensive bazar, and the surrounding country is for 
m£Uiy miles well cultivated. 


Gatgamma, a considerable villa8:e in the Seven Korles, 
situated on the side of a large plain, 22 miles north east of 
Putlam. It has been noticed for a congregation of Malabar 
Christians, who settled there during; the period the Portuguese 
were possessed of Kandy, and is remarkable for a very pro* 
digious tank, which affords the inhabitants the means of 
cultivating large plots of paddy lands. (Harvard ) 

GalkissBs a fine village situated on the road to Caltnra, 
7 miles south east from Colombo. Sir Thom4S Maitland 
rendered it a place of importance, by making it his country 
residence, and erecting a bungalow, called Mount Lavinia. 
This building was razed by Sir Edward Barnb9, and a 
magnificent house (superior in appearance, to any other in 
the Island), erected on its site, in which he gave a splendid 
entertainment to the society of Colombo previous to his depar- 
tore for Bengal in IbSl. The village is well inhabited, and has 
some good though small houses, k neat Protestant church 
was erected by Sir Robbrt Brownrigg for the use of the 
inhabitants, at his private expense. Fish is caught off this 
place in great plenty, and the country around is covered with 
topes of cocoanut trees. 

Galle {a pound), a district on the south east coast, extend- 
ing from the river of Bentotte, which separates it from 

92 The Ceylon Gazetteer^ [<? A li 

Pasdoom Korle, to the western limits of Belligam Korle, It 
owes its name, according to the Malabars^ from the circum- 
stance of this part of the country having been anciently set 
apart by R a wan a for the breeding of his cattle. It includes 
a tract varying in length from 15 to 30 miles, and in breadth 
from 6 to 2i ; and is divided into four provinces, — namely, 
Talpepattoo, Gangaboddepattoo, Wellaboddepattoo, and 
Walallawetty Korle. Its superficial contents are calculated 
at 592 square miles. The inhabitants amount to 88/24*^^, in the 
proportion of 149 to a square mile. The surface of the 
country exhibits several ranges of hills, of greater or less 
magnitude, particularly towards the interior. The soil is 
generally rocky, but produces, however, a great variety of 
grain, and fruits in abundance, and also cinnamon, coffee, 
black pepper, cotton, and cardamoms. Some parts of the 
district abound with iron ore, which is worked by the 
natives. Its manufactures consist of coarse cloth, arrack, 
cocoanut oil, dornatil (or paint oil), cordage, tortoise-shell 
boxes and combs, earthenware, cutlery, mats, gunny bags, 
jaggery, and chunam (for masticating with betel, as well as for 
house building). Fisheries to a considerable extent are carried 
on along the coast ; and the number of persons employed in 
this lucrative pursuit, amounted in 1811 to nearly 12,<100, 
including their families and children. They go out to sea in 
small out-rigged canoes called " kullah dhony,'* and fish with 
nets and lines, which latter are composed of well twisted 
cotton rubbed with glue. 

While the Island was under the dominion of the Dutch, this 
district formed the province of a commander, who ranked 
third to the governor ; but at present it has only a collector, a 
judge, and three subordinate magistrates. It possesses three 
ports of entry and export. 

There is a great intercourse held with the Maldive islands, 
and the inhabitants receive from thence large quantities of 
cumbelmas and tortoise-shells. Its exports to the coast of Coro- 
mandel, are cocoanuts, dammer, rosin arrack, cordage, coflfee, 
black pepper^ &c. ; in return for rice^ paddy^ cotton cloths^ and 

O A L] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 98 

other articles of consumption from that country. The trade 
is chiefly carried on in the barks belonging to the district^ 
which are built there. 

Cralle, the chief town of the above district, and the third in 
importance in the Island, is situated on a low rocky point of 
land projecting into the sea, in 5* north latitude, and 80* 15* 
east longitude; 72 miles south east of Colombo. It is backed 
by several ranges of hills, rising one above the other in pictur- 
esque majesty, and covered with plantations of cocoanut trees. 
The harbour is spacious, particularly the outer road. In the 
inner harbour ships may lie in perfect security during a great 
part of the year, and the water is so deep near the shore, that 
they can come close to it. Ships outward bound from 
Europe generally make this their first harbour, after they have 
come in sight of the land at Uondra Head. The fort is more 
than a mile in circumierence, and contains, besides the ordinary 
public buildings, a great number of houses occupied by Moor- 
ish families, and also a mosque for their use : it has also a 
few shops, a Dutch church, and a Wesleyan Mission chapel. 
Though the Pettah is not regularly disposed (as that of 
Colombo), yet it is extensive, and the houses are in general 
good. It is a place of considerable traflSc, and attracts an as- 
semblage of merchants and traders from distant parts of the 
Island. Ships from China, and other eastern ports, generally 
call here during the north east monsoon. The manufactures 
are tortoise-shell boxes and combs, and coir cordage ; and 
arrack is made in the neighbourhood in great quantities. Fish 
IS plentifully caught, and is sold cheaper than at Colombo. 
The water here is said to possess some bad quality, and the 
prevalence of the distemper called elephantiasis has been 
attributed to it. 

This was the first port in Ceylon discovered by the Por- 
tuguese when they arrived in 1505, under Don Lorenzo de 
Almeda, and it is affirmed that a marble pillar, having the 
royal arms of Portugal engraved on it, was erected by them 
somewhere here, in commemoration of a treaty of alliance 
which they concluded with the chieftain to whom the place 


96 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [6 OR 

Goannumallef a village in the province of Uwa on the road 
to Bintenne, 17 miles from Badulla. 

Gorkadenia, a villagfe on the road from Kurnagalle to 
Chilaw, 11 miles from Panagaraow6 and 12 from Deganwelle. 


Habhoorenne, a village situated a short distance to the left 
of the road from Dambool to Trincomalee^ about 5 miles 
from Oulandangawa. 

Halpi^ a village on the road from Colombo to Badulla, by 
Avishavelle and Ratnapoira, 8 miles from Alntnuwera. 

Hambantotte^ a military post in the Mahagampattoo, the 
officer of which has charge of all the salt leways in that 
district. It is situated on a considerable bay, formed by the 
projection of two high points of land on the east and west, 
and is much frequented during the south west monsoon by 
country barks to take in water, which is better than that of 
Tangalle, and is procured from a well about half a mile from 
the landing place. A considerable export of salt is made 
from Hambantotte to the other stations in the southern parts 
of the Island, and also to the continent of India, which gives 
employment to a great number of vessels. The village is 
chiefly composed of superannuated Malay soldiers and their 
families, but it has very few plantations, as the soil, which is 
extremely sandy, is unfit for vegetation. 

In August 1803 the Kandyans made a descent on Hamban- 
totte, and erected a battery on a hill behind the fort, with five 
smaller ones along the beach, which placed it entirely in a 
state of blockade on the land side ; but, in consequence of the 
spirited sortie made by Ensign Pbndergrast (who had the 
charge of the garrison) supported by the co-operation of Capt, 
M'NicoL, commander of the ship ^^ Minerva/' then stationed 
in the Magam bay, they were compelled to evacuate them and 
retreat to the interior. (Cordiner.) 

HAN] 7%e CeyhH Gazetteer. 97 

Hangramketty, (Hanqutanketta) an ancient town in the 
province of Hewabette^ some times called DiatUika, ^tuated 
about 16 miles south east of Kandy, surrounded by villages^ 
and bills which are chiefly composed of dolmite rock. It 
was the favorite residence of Raja Singh a 2d» who is said to 
have first fixed upon it when attacked by his subjects at 
Nellembi Nuwera, in lf>64. 

None of his successors appear to have resided here perma- 
aently, except Sreb Wuava Raja Singua, previous to his 
accession to the throne ; whence he was afterwards commonly 
styled ^' Hanguranketta Hdmadarewo," or the lord of that town* 
In 1803 when the British occupied Kandy, they sent an 
expedition to Hangramketty, for securing the person of the 
late king, who had taken up his quarters there, but it com- 
pletely failed in its object, as be had made his escape to 
the hills before the arrival of the troops, and they returned to 
head quarters after setting fire to the palace. The Kandyans 
must have afterwards repaired the palace, for when the British 
entered the country again in 1815, it was entire, and the 
temples attached to it in perfect preservation. At present 
few of the remains of the palace are to be traced, having been 
once more burnt during the rebellion. The temples, too, are 
in very bad condition, which has chiefly been occasioned by 
the troops, who were quartered in them during the above 
period ; and who on several occasions withstood the attack of 
the rebels who were collected in great force. In 1827, however, 
ihp principal temple underwent some repairs, and new walls 
were erected within the old ones, which have since been pulled 
down, in order more effectually to remove all the traces it bore 
of having been the abode of soldiers. (Knox, Cordiner, Davy.} 

Hangwelle, a village and military post in Hewagam KorloA 
situated on the old road to Kandy, 18 miles east of Colombo. 
It contains above 200 houses, mostly built amongst topes of 
cocoanut trees, and reckons more than 500 inhabitants. The 
Baptist Missionary Society formed a station here in 181!), and 
4ere is a neat chapel and a school belonging to them. 


99 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [H A R 

In An^ast 180^, the Kandyans took possession of the fort 
and villas:e ; but after retaining!; it throe days, they were driven 
back with ^eat slaughter, by the troops sent from Colombo 
under the command of Lieut. Mkrckr, of II. M 5 1st regiment. 
After the massacre of the British troops at K-mdy, the Kandyans 
a^in attempted the reduction oi this place, in order to secure 
a safe advance to Colombo, which they meditated taking ; and 
accordingly (commanded by the late king himself) they attack- 
ed the fort, but experienced such a vigorous repulse from the 
small garrison, then under the command of Captain Pollock, 
that they were compelled to abandon the attempt, and make a 
precipitate retreat, after losing the greater part of their men, 
fire arms, and ammunition, together with the royal standards. 

Hapitigam Korle, a small province of Colombo, bounded on 
the east by the Four Koiles ; on the west by Alutkoor Korle ; 
on the north by Pittigal and Belligal Korles; and on the south 
by Hina Korle. It comprehendi^ two pattoos, and 127 villages, 
with 8532 inhabitants. 

Happnwurra, a village in the province of Hawabette, on the 
road to BaduUa, 22| miles from Kandy. 

Harispattoo (Hdrasiapattoo, the Country of the Four Hun- 
dred), a small district of Udaratta, in the interior, situated 
between Katugastotte and the Girriagamme pass. According 
to tradition, it received its name from its having been origi- 
nally peopled by four hundred families, captives brought from 
the Coromandel coast by the king Gaja Bahoo 1st, in lieu of 
those whom the sovereign of that country had carried off from 
the Island during the feeble reign of his father. The country 
is almost free from jungle, and is picturesquely diversified 
with little round hills, charmingly spotted with clumps of 
cocoanut and other fruit trees, and narrow valleys covered 
with paddy crops. It suffered very much during the rebellion, 
owing to the resistance the inhabitants made against the 
British forces, but has since recovered, and at present forms 

HEW] The Ceylon Gazetteer. XHi 

one of the most flourishing countries In the interior. A con- 
siderable trade is carried on with Putlam in areka-nuts, which 
are exchanged for salt. 

Hembliattawelle, a village and fortified post on the road 
from Kandy to Badulia, by Mattooratte^ LI miles from Fort 
McDonald. It is considerably elevated above the level of the 
surrounding country, and consequently commands an ex« 
tensive view of Upper Uwa, and a great portion of the hilly 
districts of Wallapanne, Bintenne, and Doombera. 

HenneratgodJe, a village, post station, and rest house on thd 
road to Kandy^ about 17 miles 1'rom Colombo. Here are 
barracks for soldiers, very pleasantly situated on the right side 
of the road. 

Hettymoole, a village on the old road to Kandy, about 
5 miles from Idamalp4n6. Here were formerly a small military 
post, and a rest house for travellers. 

Hewagam Korle, (the soldier's country) a province of Co- 
lombo, bounded on the east by a range of hills which border 
the Kandy an provinces ; on the west by Salpitty Korle ; on the 
south by Salpitty and Raygam Korles ; and on the north by 
Hina Korle. it comprises, I'ke Hina Korle, four pattoos, bat 
not being equal in dimension, it has only one Modliar over the 
whole district. It contains 115 villages. 

Hewahetty^ a district of Udaratta in the interior, situated 
to the south east of Kandy, from which Hangramketty, its 
principal town, is only IG miles distant. Jt is a rich and beau-^ 
tiful country, diversified with high mountains and valleys. It 
contains a numerous population, and has a very extensive culti- 
vation of paddy. The Maha oya takes its rise in the mountains 
which bound the valley of Hangramketty to the southward, and 
runs through its whole extent. It sufibred very much during the 
rebellion, in consequence of the inhabitants having obstinately 
persevered in their hostility, which they demonstrated bjr 

100 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [H I N 

taking unnsaal pains to block up the roads, and to molest all 
tscorts and convoys on their march. (Ceylon Gazette.) 

Hickgodde, a village of Wellcboddepattoo, in the district of 
Galle, situated on the road to Colombo, about 22 miles soath 
east of Bentotle. The population is tolerably numerous, 
and, besides a small school belonging to the Wesleyan 
Uissionaries, it has a large school erected by Sir Robert 
Brown RIG6. 

Hiinherewey a village situated on the right bank of the 
Mahawelli ganga, 9 miles from Kindegoddy, inhabited by about 
30 families of Vedas. It possesses several gardens on both 
sides of the river, which produce Indian corn, tobacco, corakan, 
pumpkins, and plantains ; and the part of the country in which 
it is situated, is described by Mr. Brook as wtU calculated 
for the breeding of cattle, (Colombo Journal.) 

Hina Korle, a large province in the district of Colombo* To 
the east it is bounded by the Kandyan provinces; to the west 
by Alutkoor Korle ; to the south by the Kalani ganga, which 
separates it from Hewagam Korle ; and to the north, partly by 
Alurkoor Korle, and partly by Uapitigam Kurle« It is about 
25 miles long, from north east to south west, and 18 broad 
fVom north to sooth, in the widest part. With a few ex- 
ceptions on the east quarter, the surface of the country is 
nearly flat, and the soil consists in general of a stiff clay, 
in some places red and brittle, in others white and tenacious. 
It produces paddy and various sorts of grain in abundance, be- 
sides supplying large quantities of jack, cocoanut, areka, 
coffee, pepper, cinnamon, oranges, pine apples, &c.; and as it 
possesses a water communication with Colombo by the Kalani 
ganga> most of these products are conveyed to the market there 
on rafts constructed with bamboo, and bartered for salt, salt 
fish, cotton stuffs, and tobacco. This province is divided into 
font pattoos, named Adikaripattoo, Meddapattoo, Odegaba- 
pattoo, and Gangaboddepattoo, of which each two liave a 
Modllar, and a number of other infericfr headmen. It J5 

H(7L] The Ceylon Gazetteer. ISl 

estimated to cpDtain 254 villages. The inhabitants are all 
Singhalese, and earn their livelihood either by agriculture or 
travelling about as pedlars in the Seven Korles. They faaVe 
a great many buffaloes, and large herds of other cattle* 


Hondaella, a village and rest house, situated on the road 
from Colombo to Trincomalee^ by Kurnagalle, about 9 mile» 
from the Alauwe ferry. 

Huluganga, a small river which runs through Doombera, 
about half a mile from Rabookwelle, where there is a small 
and neat Wihare, a small ambalam, and a number of scattered 
huts surrounded by fruit trees, and a large extent of paddy 



IdalgcLshena, a mountain which stands about 11 miles to the 
east of Kalupau6| forming the principal pass from Safiragam 
into Upper Uwa. It rises to the height of 4,700 feet above tho 
level of the sea, and exhibits most charming scenery ; the top 
and lower part being clothed with the richest lemon grass, and 
the middle with a thick forest, affording an asylum to game of 
all descriptions. (Davy. J 

IdamalpdnS, a village on the old road to Kandy, 52 miles 
north east of Colombo, almost surrounded by a chain of 
majestic hills. Here there was formerly a small fort, built by 
the British government. 

Idangodde, a village in the province of Saffragam, situated 
oil the rdad from Colombo to Ratnapoora, 87i miles from Ae 

former place, and 14 from the latter. 

• . . 

Iddegoddepattoo, a small province, belonging to Passdom 
Korle, in the district of Caltura^ so called from a village (tf the 
jame aame. It contains 37 villages. 

102 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [IRR 

Tlpekadawe, a Tillage and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Pachellepalle^ on the south borders, having 292 inhabitants. 
Besides paddy, a very small proportion of fine grain is culti- 
vated in this part of the country; and bein^ almost covered 
with jangle, it is much infested ^ith elephants. The village is 
•mall, situated about a mile and a half from the sea, and 
contains a rest house for the accommodation of travellers. 

Irrentivoe (the Two Brother's Island, the Double Island), 
two small Islands in the Gulf of Manaar, 5 miles north west 
from Pallawarayenkattoo, and named in the charts the '^Two 
Brothers." These Islands are inhabited, and abound with good 
pasturage ; the colts of the Delft stud were formerly turned out 
here to graze. Fish is plentiful. There is a small Roman 
catholic chapel in one of the Islands. 


Jaffna, a large and populous province, formerly a kingdom, 
is situated on a neck of Innd at the northern extremity of 
Ceylon, directly opposite to Negapatam in the southern Carna- 
tic. It is bounded on the east and north by the gulf of 
Bengal; on the west by the straits of Manaar; and on the 
south by an arm of the sea ; which gives it an insular appear- 
ance. Its whole length is about 85 miles from north west to 
south east ; and its breadth from 5 to 15 miles from north east 
to south west; comprehending an area of 1220 square miles. 
It is divided into four districts, (exclusive of the islands) 
called Wadamarachy, Tenmarachy, Pachellepalli, and Wali- 
gamme, which contain thirty two parishes, and one hundred 
and fifty nine villages. From its maritime situation it escapes 
the intensely hot winds which prevail on the continent, and the 
climate is therefore on the whole healthy, and less inimical to 
European constitutions. At Jaffnapatam the mean daily 
variation of the temperature is 5', and the annual range from 
70* to 90V The soil is generally sandy and calcareous, resting 
tpon madrapore; bat when manured^ U cultivated with much 

JAF] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 108 

success. Paddy is sown in Aasfust and September^ and reaped 
in January and February; and though the province is not 
intersected by any rivers or water courses for inigation, yet 
the crops seldom fail, except in the event of long draught. Of 
the fine grains, waragoo, saamy, corakan, tenesaamy, and 
panisaamy, are alone cultivated. Tobacco of a very superior 
quality is raised in large quantities, particularly in the district 
of Pachellepalli, and is transported to the markets of Colombo, 
Galle, and Kandy, and also to Travancore on the Malabar 
coast, where the Raja retains it as an article of monopoly, and 
sells it at a high price. 

Jaffna contains very few cocoanut plantations, but this 
deficiency is supplied by a great number of palmyra trees, 
the fruit and roots of which, form a material portion of the 
diet of the inhabitants, while the leaves serve as thatch for 
houses, as a substitute for paper, and for making roats> 
baskets, winnows, and fans; and the timber is used in 
building. Areka nuts are produced in different parts of the 
province, but they scarcely equal the consumption of the 
inhabitants. Jack fruits, mangoes, oranges, pine apples, pome- 
granates, guavas, jambos, bannanas (or plantains), anonas 
(or custard apples), and a variety of other fruits are found in 
the villages ; and grapes are raised in the town and at the 
Mission stations in the district. Pulse of several sorts, sweet 
potatoes, yams, and other native vegetables, also abound ; 
all of which are daily brought to the bazars and exposed 
for sale. Chaya roots, and indigo, grow wild in the province ; 
but the first has alone attracted notice as an article of trade. 
Jaffna is well supplied with fish ; and chanks are found on the 
sea coast, as well as embedded under ground in different parts 
of the province. There are great numbers of black cattle and 
sheep, and also immense herds of goats ; and the jungles of the 
Wanny district furnish an abundance of game. The principal 
manufactures are those of cloth and jaggery. The descendants 
of a colony of Senyas, who emigrated from the opposite coast, 
and settled there during the Dutch government, are chiefly em- 
ployed in making cloth, which is brought to sucti^i. %\»x^^ 

104 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [SAF 

perfection, that some of their camboys and savima rival thoae 
of Policat, both in texture and colour. There are potteries, 
and some villa8:es of braziers and gold and silver smiths. Oil 
is made at Jaffna from the kernels of the cocoa, punnay, 
and other nuts, the apparatus for making which consists of a 
large wooden mortar and a lever, which is turned by two 

The export trade of Jaffna to ports beyond Ceylon, consists 
of tobacco, palmyra timber, jaggery, chillies, onions, winnows, 
brass, pots, &c. ; and the imports are cloth, cotton thread, iron, 
paddy, rice, curry seeds, medical drugs, and earthenware. 

From the census taken in 1831, under the direction of govern- 
ment, it appears that the population of the different parishes 
then amounted to 116,528, of whom 56,417 were employed 
in agriculture, 15,8*>l in manufactures, and 8,859 in com- 
merce. The inhabitants are, with few exceptions, Tamulians, 
and are laborious, active, and persevering; but it is to be 
regretted, that the generality of them are remarkably lax in 
tbeiif morals : the calendar usually exhibits an extended list of 
prisoners for murder, highway robbery, ear cutting and other 
atrocious crimes. In former times this province was particu- 
larly famed as the seat of Tamul literature, but latterly 
learning has sadly declined ; and even among the Brahmins 
there are very few who can calculate an eclipse, or solve an 
arithmetical problem. The greater portion of the inhabitants 
were once Roman catholics, but afterwards professed the 
protestant religion, and had a church and school in every 
parish ; but since the downfall of the Dutch power in Ceylon, 
they have relapsed into Hindooism, and now strictly adhere to 
all the superstitious characteristics of the Siva creed, as 
is proved by their having at the present period upwards of 
SOO temples for celebrating its mysteries. It is however 
sincerely to the hoped that the zealons efforts of the Mission- 
aries of different denominations, who are now settled in 
.various parts of the province, will ultimately tend to re-esta- 
blish the Christian religion among them, and also produce 
a reformation in their character^ so as to removja the stigmn 

JAF] The Ceyton Gazetteer. IO5* 

which at present attaches to it. In the proyince there are up- 
wards of 10^000 slaves of the Kowia, N^allua, and Palla castes^ 
who are generally employed in husbandry, or in tending cattle. 
They are now treated with more lenity than formerly ; bat 
during the Dutch government the utmost risror was exercised 
towards them, the slightest offence being visited uith chains; 
for which act the owner had only to pay a fee of six fanams to 
g^bvernment* In IS18 a regulation was passed by the British 
government, annulling all joint ownerships in slaves, and 
allowing them to purchase their freedom (the amount for each 
to be determined by arbitration); and another in 1820, for 
emancipating all the female children of slaves (by purchase) 
at their birth, the government engaging to pay the owners two 
or three rixdoUars, according to the caste of the mother; 
under these two regulations the number of slaves whdt have 
been manumitted is considerable. 

The law as administered to the Malabar natives of Jaffna^ 
is peculiar to them, and is contained in a code usually styled 
^* nesa Walama " (country law, or custom) which was coink;t<> 
ed, aad rendered into writing, by the Dissave Mr. Isaacs^ 
under the direction of the Dutch governor Simons, in the year 
1707; and the British government, on the recommendation 
of Sir ALEXANDisa Johnston, formerly chief Justice, who 
considered it well adapted to the habits and opinions of 
the natives, approved of its adoption amongst them, in lieu of 
any other foreign code. Some of the peculiar characteristics 
of this law are, that daughters do not equally inherit with sons, 
and a woman's property cannot be incumbered with the debts 
of her husband. 

With regard to the ancient history of this interesting pro- 
vince, we are in possession of very little information ; all that 
can be collected from the traditions of the natives is, that 
in ages past, it was a complete desert ; but that it fell into 
the hands of a blind adventurer from the Coromandel coasts 
named Vira Raghwa (who was a yalpanen, or lyrist by 
profession), as a gift from an ancient king of Ceylon, on account 
of his wonderful feats on the lyre ; be had it cleared of jungle, 


IM The Ceylon Gazetteer. [J A F 

and it was subseqaently colonized from the southern provinces 
of India^ which were then independent of the Telingfa empire 
of ViJAiANAGGBR. After the province was sufficiently popu- 
lated, he called it after his name, yalpana nadoo, (or the 
country of the lyrist^, now corrupted into Jaffana or Jaffna ; and 
sometime afterwards, formed it into a kingdom. Sensible 
however of his own ineligibility, he went to Coromandel, and 
brought over a prince of the race of Solen, whom be crowned 
king in the year 3000 of kali yug, Tor 101 b. g.) and to whom 
he made over his right to the soil. This king was unfortu- 
nately crippled in one of his arms, hence he was styled 
ViSAYA KooLANGAi CHARfLRAWARTi ; and the most striking 
feature of his character, is the attention he paid to the im- 
provement of the country. His descendants subsequently 
reigned at Jaffna, under the title of Ariya Chakkrawartees, 
and carried on a constant warfare with the Singhalese. Sreb 
PRAKR4MA Bahoo 6th, who asccnded the throne of Cotta in 
the year 1410, is said to have reduced the kingdom of Jaffna 
under the Singhalese yoke, deposed the Chakkratvarti, and 
made one of his own nephews king over it. This subjection 
to foreign power appears, however, to have been of very 
short duration ; for we find that when the Portuguese arrived 
on the Island, Jaffna was governed by its native sovereigns. 
When the Romish religion was first preached at Manaar, 
in 1544, by the disciples of St. Francis Xavier, the king 
of Jaffna ordered ()00 of the inhabitants to be cruelly mas- 
sacred for embracing this religion; which first excited the 
enmity of the Portuguese, with whom he carried on a desultory 
warfare for a few years, until he was finally vanquished by 
them in 1591, and the whole kingdom reduced to their domi- 
nion. The Dutch took possession of the province in 1600 
and retained it till i7il5, when it was surrendered to the 

Jaffnapatam, the chief town of the above province, is situa- 
ted in 9^ 47" north latitude, and 80* 9" east longitude ; 296 miles 
south west of Madras, and 215 north of Golombo. It pos- 

J AT] The Cey ton Gazettes. 107 

SQsses a large fort built in the form of a pentagon^ with fite 
bastions, furnished with a broad moat, and extensive glacis), 
and having within its walls a church, in the form of a Greek 
cross, a commandant's house, and some other good buildings, 
besides barracks, and accommodations for soldiers. At the 
distance of half a mile to the eastward stands the Pcttab, which 
contains several broad parallel streets, intersected by smaller 
ones. The houses are mostly built of brick, and some of them 
shaded in front by trees. The majority of the iahabitants of the 
Pettah formerly consisted of the Dutch and their descendants ; 
but since the British conquest, many have emigrated to different 
parts of the Island, and some have gone to fiatavia. The baz^r 
is abundantly supplied with the necessaries of life at a cheap 
rate, and always wears a busy appearance. In the neigh- 
bourhood there is another church belonging to the Tamul 
Protestants, called St. John's, in which the Tamul colonial 
chaplain of the district officiates. The Hindoos have a large 
temple in the neighbouring town of Wannapanny, which far 
exceeds all the rest in the province, both in grandeur and 
magnificence. It is ornamented with an accumulation of 
small towers, and enclosed by a wall having a large gateway* 
It was founded and endowed by one Wyti Linga Chetty, 
about forty years ago, and there is a band of dancing girls 
attached to it, who enliven the processions with their dancing. 

Jaffnapatam is not accessible to vessels of any considerable 
she, owing to the shallowness of the water ; but they unload 
their cargoes at Kaits, and have them conveyed up to the 
town in small boats. 

Jaffnapatam is the seat of a collector, a provincial judge, a 
fiscal, and a sitting magistrate, all which offices are filled 
by gentlemen of the civil service ; the two first form a minor 
court to decide appeals brought from the coruts of the subor- 
dinate magistrates within the province. 

Jayelle (KanuwaniX ^ village situated on a river branch- 
ing from the Dandugam, 9 miles from Colombo, on the road 
to Negombo. It has a comfortable iwA ho\i!S« tot ^% ^^^^'c&sfi^" 

106 The CeifUm Oazeiteer. [JAY 

dation of travellers, and was formerly tbe station of a 
magistrate. The inhabitaots have large plats of paddy land» 
diversified with cocoanut, jack, arekanat^ coffee^ and other 
trees, nhicfa flourish in great perfection. 


Kaddoopitii Oya, a river of Yattakalampattoo, about 8 
miles south of Chila\\, which flows in the neighbourhood of 
Madampe, from which, the place has often been denominated 
*^Kaddoopitti Madampe;*' probably to distinguish it from a 
village of the same name in the district of Galle. 

Kaddaowella, a viHage and rest house 10 miles east of 
Colombo, on tlie road to BaduUa. It belongs to the Vidany 
of Adikarripattoo, has a few good houses, and contains about 
250 inhabitants. 

Kadirawelly, a considerable village, (inhabited by Timilas) 
with a stream, which runs through it from the Virgel ganga. 
It lies on the road to Trincomalee, about 48 miles north west 
of Batticalo. It has a iar^^e breed of cattle, and the inhabitants 
make great quantities ot oil from punni nuts. 

Kaits, a seaport, and village, in the parish of the same name, 
situated at the extreme end of a harbour, which is formed by 
an opening about half a mile broad, between the Islands of 
Kuradive and Leyden, connecting the Jaffna lake with the sea. 
Its Singhalese name was " Ooratotte" (or hog-ferry^, which 
originated in a fabulous story of Sarrkya (\iho was meta- 
morphosed into an enormous hog) having swam across from 
the Cororoaudel coast, and effected a landing at this place. 
The harbour affords safe anchorage for shipping at all seasons 
of the year, and is much frequented by country craft and small 
vessels. There are the remains of a fort, said to have been 
erected by the Portuguese, to command the entrance of this 
harbour^ and by a cross fire with ih» guns offort Hammanheil^ 

KAL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. IW 

to check the advance of any invading enemy. The village is 
however not very extensive, and the houses of the natives are 
very mean; but it has a small neat church belonging to 
the Roman catholics, and a court house, and is the seat of 
a magistrate. There are very few cocoanut trees in the 
village, but abundance of palmyras, the timber of which 
is exported to the continent. The greater part of the in- 
habitants are fishermen. Fish is exceedingly plentiful, and 
there was formerly here a dep6t for chanks. (Colombo 


From Bald(£US*s account of Jaffna^ it appears that Kaits 
was in former times subject to dreadful inundations, and 
in the year 1658 a considerable number of the inhabitants 
and cattle perished. 

Kalani (Kallania), once the capital of a subordinates 
principality, but now a village, is very pleasantly situated 
on the banks of the river of the same name, about 10 miles 
north east of Colombo, It was originally founded by Jata- 
LATissA Raja, son of Mahanaga, brother to the king 
Dbyeni Peatissa Raja, who reigned from the year 306 
to 26(> before Christ, and was subsequently embellis^hed by 
bis successor. The city was at that time lour gows, or about 
16 English miles, distant from the mouth of the river, and 
rivalled many of the cities then on the Island, both in riches 
and magnificence. When Jatalatissa went to Maagam, 
to succeed his grandfather, Kelenitissa was left to reign 
at Kalani, and during his reign be ordered the chief priest of 
the Wihare, to be cast into a cauldron of boiling oil, upon an 
unfounded supposition that he had some amorous intrigue 
with the queen ; and it is afiirmed, that in consequence of 
this wanton act of atrocity, the Island was visited by a 
dreadful hurricane ; the sea swelling abruptly, swept away 
a great part of the coast adjacent to Kalani, including 
979 villages of fishermen, and 470 of pearl divers, and 
fednced the distance from the city to the mouth of the CLve>t V<cy 
one jfoti;. We find notice takeu ot it atx^tyi^x^i^) ^^ ^' 

112 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

Moors^ the former of whom carry on a considerable distillation 
of arrack. 

Kabiwamodera^ a village in the province of Barbareen, 
situated at the mouth of a river 1 1 miles south of Caltnra. 
It was formerly the exclusive property of the Chalias, having 
i>een bestowed on Xhem as praveni by the king Wijaya 
Prakrama Bahoo, at the time they settled on the Island. 
It possesses a small harbour, and carries on a trade with 
the coast of Coromandel in arrack^ copperahs^ and cordage. 

Kandaboddepattoo, a division of the province of Matura, 
bordering upon the Kandyan hills. In J 814 it contained 60 
villages and a numerous population. 

Kandakooda, a village of Akkarapattoo, situated on the 
banks of the gulf of Calpentyn, about 8 miles south west 
of Calpentyn. In this village are numerous salt pans^ which 
furnish employment to a great number of the inhabitants. 

Kandakooltfy a fishing village on a sandy beach near 
the sea, about t^ miles south west of Calpentyn. It is almost 
covered with plantations of cocoanut trees, and is chiefly 
inhabited by the lower order of Malabars. The sea has made 
great inroads at this place, and the village has lately been 
quite separated from the isthmus of Mutual by a breach into 
the Iake« There is a small Roman catholic chapel dedicated 
to St. Stephen, or as he is here called " Santo Estave."* 

Kanddne, a villas:e of Ragampattoo in the Alutkoor Korle^ 
situated a smnll distance off the road from Colombo to 
Negombo. Here is a small Roman catholic chapel^ and a 
school. The present Modliar of the district resides at this 

Kandally^ (Dantalawa) a villasre in the Tamballagampattoo, 
noted for an artificial lake of considerable magnitude^ which 
is situated in the neighbourhood. This lake is about four 
wiles in circumference, and is neariy surrounded by large 

KAN] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 118 

hills ; but in one part where nature does not afford a barrier, 
an embankment is formed of hewn stones, piled ap twenty feet 
high, and from one hundred and fifty to two hundred feet thick 
at the base, and a mile and one third long. It has two 
sluices constructed with much ingenuity, and the water thus 
carried off through them, forms two rivers, one of which 
irrigates all the paddy lands round the bay of Tambal- 
lagam, and disembogues itself into the sea. ^* At what time, 
or under what government, this surprising work was con- 
structed, there is no satisfactory account to be obtained ; bnt 
its magnitude evinces a very numerous population, with a 
strong government, possessing the power of putting it into 
action, and of leading its strength and industry ; and exhi- 
biting at the same time a degree of civilization, from which tho 
present inhabitants are far removed/' ( Cordiner, Bartolacci.J 

Kandetooky, a village in the jungle in the province of 
Pomparippoo, situated about 6 miles south of Mardodde, 
Every traveller of the Hindoo religion who passes by this 
place, hangs a piece of rag or cloth on the branch of a tree 
Avhich stands there, to propitiate the favour of Ayanar^ a 
god who presides over forests. A deep well has been lately 
excavated,at the expence of Manuel De Rosairo Pulle 
of Calpentyn, which is a great accommodation to the weary 
traveller in this part of the country, where water is scarcely 
ever to be had in the dry season. 

Kandyan Provinces. A general appellation for such districts 
in the interior of Ceylon as were formerly under the dominion 
of the kings of Kandy, but which now form a part of the 
British empire. According to Dr. Davy they extend from 
about (»• 2» to %• 45> of north latitude, and t<0« 8' and 81* 45' 
of east longitude, and are bounded by a belt of the maritime 
districts of unequal breadth, the greatest being on the north, 
which is nearly eighty mites, and the other parts not exceeding 
thirty. They are computed to contain 14,1 tl square miles, 
but the scattered population amounts only to 2bb,486, beiu^ 
in the proportion of 20 to a square mile* 


114 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

The Kaodyan Provinces are divided into eleven districts, of 
which Nuwera Kalawa and the Seven K'jries are situated 
to the north and north west ; Matele, including Bintenne and 
Wellasse^ on the east ; Uwa on the south east ; Saffragaui, 
and the Three Korles on the south west ; and the Four Korles 
on the west. In the highest and most central part are the 
districts of Uda Nuwera and Yatti Nuwera, in which were 
situated the two capitals of the extinguished sovereignty. 
The whole of these provinces, with the exception of the plains 
around Anooraadhapoora, exhibit a constant succession of steep 
mountains and deep vallies, intersected by numerous ravines 
and thick forests. A continuous ridge of low hills extends a 
considerable distance to the southward, and sometimes reaches 
even to the sea coast. The mountains do not stretch in any 
direction to the sea coast, but are generally distant 30 or 
40 miles, descending in some parts precipitately into the 
plains. The highest of them lifts its summit tothe altitude 
of upwards of 7000 feet above the level of the sea. Several 
rivers and streams rise in the mountains, and take their 
course on each side of the Island ; but in traversing the plains 
their currents become lans:uid, so as not to be navigable 
except a short distance from their mouths. The Maha- 
welli ganga alone is navigable to within 20 miles of Kandy. 
Almost all the other rivers which pass through the districts 
to the east and northward, were formerly of great service in 
replenishing the numerous tanks for the irrigating of lands 
in those districts. 

Though the climate is generally unhealthy in those parts of 
the country where the excessive thickness of the jungle induces 
fog and damp, yet the districts of Hewahetty (which includes 
Walapanne, Uwa, and Kotmale^ are decidedly otherwise, 
and where the thermometer varies from 50\to 80"; but at 
Nuwera Ellia, which is 6000 feet above the level of the sea, 
the variation is from 35 J to 80i*, and it is justly considered 
a most advantageous situation for the establishment of an 
invalid station for Europeans. The soil is generally fertile, 
and produces cofiee^ cinnamon, arekanuts, pepper, sugar 

KAN] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 115 

eane, tobacco, hemp, and cotton in great abundance ; besides 
paddy, fine grain, and tropical fruits of various kinds. The 
Kandyans display great skill in the cultivation of paddy, they 
cut terraces in the sides of the hills, which ^re successively 
watered by the mountain streams descending into the 

In the Kandyan Provinces there are not any extensive 
manufactures, and in this respect the old proverb in Bucks, 
*' more live by lands than by hands " is quite applicable to the 
inhabitants, for their time is more devoted to tillage than 
any thing else. The manufactures are cloth, jaggery, mats, 
earthenware, and the different kinds of implements used by 
themselves, such as guns, knives, swords, mattocks, axes, &c. 

During former governments all intercourse between the 
interior and the sea coast was prevented, and from political 
motives the opening of roads prohibited, while the gravets, 
or passes, were strictly guarded ; but since the British con- 
quest these impediments have been removed, and every spot 
in the interior is accessible by roads which have been formed 
throughout the whole country. 

The trade of these provinces has fluctuated considerably 
since the conquest. The imports consist of salt, salt fish, 
cotton stuffs, cocoanuts, chinawares, and copper vessels; 
while the exports consist of paddy, rice, small grain, cinnamon, 
coffee, pepper, arekanuts, jaggery, garlic, cardamums, iron, 
plumbago, precious stones, &c. &c. These articles of merchan- 
dize are chiefly conveyed on the backs of cattle in tawallams^ 
(or saddle bags). 

The Kandyans are of the same race as the Singhalese 
on the sea coast, but the vast difference they exhibit in their 
customs altogether, as well as in their style of dress, has' 
led almost all European writers to treat them as a distinct 
race of people. They are extremely timid and shy with stran- 
gers, yet they are affable and courteous to friends, and exceed- 
ingly hospitable, and their honesty has seldom been called ia 
question. They have been branded for laut^ oi %^Ti\^m«©x>a\S^ 

116 The Ceylon Gazetteer. ["K A N 

regard to female chastity ; this is however not founded on fact, 
though it cannot be denied that considerable profligacy prevaiU 
among the lower orders (which, more or less, may be con- 
sidered to be the case among most nations). It is however 
to be regretted that marriage, even as a civil contract, is 
not binding among them, and the ceremony is so truly absurd 
in itself, as to give it no importance ; a suit of clothes given 
by any man to a woman will constitute a marriage, and 
the horrible practice still exists in some places of permitting 
one woman to belong to all the brothers of a family. 

Of the laws of the Kandyans, some of them strikingly 
resemble those of the Romans and Goths, inasmuch as 
insolvent debtors were subject to slavery, and a whole village 
was mulcted if a murder was committed in it, unless the 
murderer were produced. In doubtful cases they resorted 
to an ordeal, which consisted in plunging two of the fingers of 
the litigants three times successively into boiling oil, or 
burning cow dung. 

The kings of Kandy were possessed of absolute authority, 
and had no council whatever, even in form. They were ad- 
dressed by the most high sounding titles, while their court 
assumed the name of Maha Wahale or ** the Great Gate," and 
he who was admitted to the royal presence was obliged to 
prostrate himself with his face close to the floor. The Adikars, 
who ranked next, acted as Ministers of state, and also as 
Chief Justices; but they had no power to pass sentence 
of death, or inflict capital punishment without the sanction of 
the king. Under these Adikars were several Dissapatis^ who 
were governors of the provinces, and to these followed the 
myriads of Mohattales, Corales, Lekamas, and Attn Corales, 
who took an account of, and collected, the revenues of the 
villages. Besides these officers of state, the king had several 
others of his household, and also a principal, for each of the 
Budhist temples in the kingdom. 

Justice is now administered in these Provinces under the 
immediate control of a Board of Commissioners, composed 
of the commandaot of Kandy and two civil servants, wboliavej 

KAN] The Ceylon Oazetteer. 117 

charge respectively of the revenue and judicial departments* 
Beside these, there are eleven Agents of government in the 
different districts, who are intrusted with both judicial and 
revenue authority. The Adikars^ Dissapatis, and other native 
chiefs are still retained, and paid by government, but they, 
possess no influence in the administration of the country, and 
only take a part in judicial proceedings as assessors, (Davy, 
Colebrooke, Philalethes.J 

Kandy. The name Kandy is unknown to the natives of the 
Interior. They call it Maha Nuwera (the Great City) univer- 
sally. It is sometimes called after a cage rock at the side of 
the hill over the old palace, Sankada Gala* Maha Nuwera, 
the late capital of the sovereigns of Ceylon, is situated in th# 
province of Yatti Nuwera, in a valley of an am phi theatrical 
shape, formed by the surrounding hills. It lies in 7* 2'»> north 
latitude, and in 80° 47' east longitude, and is 1467 feet abovo 
the level of the sea. The distance from Colombo to Kandy, 
up the Kadooganawa pass, is 72 miles ; but by Ambigam- 
moowa it is 88; from Trincomalee 130; from Matura 171; 
and from Batticalo r^6 miles. The principal roads leading to 
and from the town are, first, the Colombo road (by far the best 
on the Island), which enters it by Peradeniya on the south ; 
the Trincomalee road on the north, which has lately been 
made a carriage track the whole way, with the exception of 
about 20 miles ; and that which leads to BaduUa on the east. 
Formerly there was a Serjeant's guard kept at the termination 
of the streets leading to each of these roads, but two only 
arc now considered necessary ; one on the Colombo, the other 
on the Badulla side. In the time of the king of Kandy the 
town exhibited a very different appearance from what it now 
does; it was then but a poor miserable looking place, 
composed of a single street about two miles in length, with 
the palace at the end, and lanes branching from the principal 
thoroughfare. As the adherents of the court only were 
privileged to reside in tiled houses, the habitations of the 
inforior orders were low huts, mostly built oC isw\)Av ^i^^ 

118 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

thatched with straw and shifigles, having small apertures 
instead of uindov.s. At present there are two principal 
streets, namely, the Colombo street, which runs east and 
west, dividing the town into two nearly equal parts, and 
the Trincomalee street which runs Trom north to south, cross* 
ing the other at right angles, and making almost a similar 
division. A few others run parallel to each of these streets, 
but in consequence of houses and lanes intervening and 
crossing them, cannot exteift a great way in either direction. 
Malabar Street, in the east, is almost out of the town, or rather 
forms a little town in itself, and was in the king's time 
exclusively occnpied by the partizans of the court, (and formed 
the lounge, or in other words the West End; though in point of 


position, it happens to be the reverse.) It is considered the 
most desirable part of Kandy to reside in, being separated 
from the bustle of the town, and possessing the vicinity of 
the lake. The principal bazar is situated where the Colombo 
and Trincomalee streets intersect each other, and* extends 
round this spot at an equal distance in every direction. But 
besides this there are boutiques extending along to the extremi- 
ties of these and the several streets diverging from them, 
exclusive of those which are to be found in various other and 
more distant parts of the town. The bazar, generally speaking, 
is well lurnished ; and in appearance, and most other circum- 
stances, is not different from that of Colombo. 

With regard to Public Buildings the Pavilion comes first 
in order. It is decidedly the finest structure in Ceylon, and 
stands at the north east extremity of Kandy, commanding 
a view of the whole town (except Malabar street and its 
neighbourhood), as well as an extensive prospect beyond 
in several directions. Though not so large or commodious, 
it is fully equal, if not superior, in outward appearance to any 
house in Chowringbee, in the neighbourhood of Calcutta, 
where all the most magnificent specimens oi architecture of 
which the "City of Palaces'* can boast are centred. It is 
composed of a centre and two wings, forming at the back three 
^Jdes ofu i^uare. it is not yet finished.- The niextis the Major 

KAN] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 119 

General's residence (forinerly the Commandant's quarters), 
a large and commodious housc^ standing upon a bill in the 
range forming the western boundary of the town. Hdfway 
down this hill, on a level surface, is the Royal Cemetery, near 
to Trincoraalee street ; interesting more from the circumstances 
of its possessing the bodies or ashes of kings and heroes, 
which were for many generations deposited there, than from 
any external advantages either of situation or appearance. 
It contains a number of indifferently looking tombstones, 
(each having a Singhalese inscription) as a monument of the 
august personages who repose beneath them. It is enclosed 
by a wall, and has within it a small temple similar within and 
without to ali the other native sanctuaries of the same dimen- 
sions. Close to the above burying ground is an officers 
quarters, and a little further north of both stands the Trinco- 
malee barrack, so called from its position with respect to 
Trincomalee, At the foot of the range are two government 
houses which are allotted as quarters to field officers. One is 
a flat roofed building, and the other originally was so, but 
recently requiring repair a skping roof has been substituted 
in its stead ; and it is now set apart as the residence of the 
commandant. Above and behind these, are the Parade ground 
and principal European cantonment. The Palace and the build- 
ings connected with it (which constituted the residence of the 
court circle and the chief portion of the nobility in the king's 
time) are now made to answer the purposes of public offices, — 
the Cutcherry, and the abode of the Judicial and Revenue 
Commissioners. The Hall of Audience, formerly comprising 
part of the palace, is now used as a court of justice on week 
days, and on Sundays as a church ; but with the exception 
of some handsomely carved pillars, extending: the whole length 
on each side, it possesses nothing remarkable. The Library 
is a modern structure, consisting of two very fine rooms 
opening on a gallery, or enclosed verandah, the entire length 
of the rovims (at the back) ; the side and front verandahs 
are open. There are two Cignts of steps leading u^ lo ^Jsvfe 
rooms, and underneath are store looms on ^ \^n^\ viVOcl ^^ 

ISO The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

road. This building is sitaated near the bridge which 
divides the Parade ground from the approach to Malabar 
street, and stands upon pillars erected in the lake by order 
of the late king, and intended as the foundation of a s^t 
of baths for himself. The Jail is spacious, and well situated, 
nearly frontiiig the principal entrance to the Pavilion ; and 
so constructed as to form an open sc|uare in the centre. With 
the exception of the Hospital in Malabar street, which is 
composed of three or four rows of rooms, separated by open 
narrow spaces, and paved with brick (intervening the Com- 
missary's stores); the Castle barrack, standing on the sum- 
mit of the Castle hill in the range forming the southern 
boundary of Kandy ; the Government houses occupied by 
some of the Military officers in different parts of the town; 
and, lastly, the Native lines and quarters for the Native officers 
of ihe Rifle regiment, together with the hospitals attached 
to them, which are too insignificant to particularise, there 
is no other building of any note. The Magistrate's court 
house is situated at the east end of Colombo Street, and forms 
a conspicuous object on entering the town. In Trincomalee 
Street, opposite to the Pavilion, an Hotel was established 
in November iSJi, which affords good accommodation to 

It only remains to enumerate the Temples, within what 
is called the Peninsula of Kandy. These are sixteen in 
number: four belonging to the Hindoos, and twelve to the 
Budhists. Of the former, the first is the Maha Dewalle, 
sacred to Vishnu, situated at the eastern end of King's street 
(parallel with Colombo street ^ betwefen the house of the 
Revenue Commissioner, and the principal entrance to the 
Pavilion.— 2d. The Naata Dewalle, sacred to Naata, who it 
is anticipated will be the 5th or Maitree Buhha of the 
present kalpa. This temple was erected by king Narendra 
SiNGiJA, and stands opposite to the first.— 3d. The Katragam 
Dewalle, sacred to KatragJam, orKARTiKEYA, the god of 
war, stands about the centre of Colombo street on the south 
sido.'-'itb. The Pdttini Dewalle, sacred to Pattini, or 

KAN] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 121 

DuRGA^ the goddess of destruction, stands close to the Magis- 
trate's Court house at the eastern extremity of Colombo street. 

Of the Bndhist temples, the first is the Dalada Maligawa 
(the principal temple in Kandy), situated close to the Hail 
of Audience, and interesting as the depository of the Relic of 
BuDHA (consisting of his right canine tooth), which is said 
to have been brought from Dantapoora by the daughter 
and son-inlaw of Goohasrwa, in the ninth year of the 
reign of Kirti Sciek Mai wan 1st.— 2d. The Rajaamaya, 
or Palleymaale Wihare, adjoining the Pavilion.— 3d. The 
Gedigey Wihare, situated between Trincomalee street and 
the road leading to the Major Generals house. This has 
been already mentioned as included within the compound 
of the Royal Cemetery. — 4 th. The Malwatte Wihare y on the 
south side of the lake. — 5th. The Pooja Mailoo Wihare, close 
to, and west of, the above. — Gth. The Kotooqodella Wihare, 
near the approach to Castle Hill. — 7th. The Kandly Wihare, 
situated on the hill above the Pooja Mailoo Wihare, and to 
the left of the path leading up to Matta Pattana (corrupted 
into Mutton Button), a lofty hill, which forms part of the 
southern boundary of Kandy.— 8th. The^ Raama Wihare, situ- 
ated on a hill near the termination of Trincomalee street, 
on the east side.— 9th. The Gangaraama Wihare, situated 
at Tal watte, near the Lewelle ferry, between 'Malabar street 
and Doombera— lOth. The Huduhumpola Wihare, near Wat- 
Hookeley.— llth. The Waagolletenne Wihare, in the village of 
Nawilmadoo,' near Davie's tree, (the scene of the massacre in 
1803.)— 1 2th. The Nittawella Wihare, near the road leading 
to the Wattapologa ferry. 

The Roman catholics had formerly a very considerable 
establishment at Bogambera, with a magnificent Church 
erected by the Venerable Father Jose Vaz (who died in 
January 1711); b'lt on the accession of Narendra Singha 
(Koonda&aala) to the throne, the establishment was broken up, 
and the church razed to the ground. Since the British 
conquest however some persons, adherents of the above 
mentioned church, settled in the town, and etecV.^4 ^ Owa.^ 


121 The Ceylon Gazetteer. TKAN 

marched a large army into the heart of the interior^ and took 
possession of Kandy before Raja Singh a (who was then in 
another part of the Island) had time to return. In order 
to conciliate the Kandyans, the Portuguese invested Don 
Philip with the crown ; and^ at the same time made Don 
John commander in chief of the forces: both were des- 
cendants of the royal line, and had received the sacrament 
of Baptism among the Portuguese. On their elevation to 
these new dignities, it was stipulated that they should marry 
none but females of that nation^ and that the Kandyans should 
8w^r fealty to the king of Portugal. The town of Kandy 
bad in the interval suffered much from the ravages of Raja 
Singh Ay and therefore the Portuguese repaired, strengthened, 
and embellished it for the accommodation of the new king, 
who was Wi'Icomed to his palace by the acclamations of his 
subjects, and with every demonstration of outward respect and 
show. The Portuguese considering that every thing was now 
settled on a footing of durable tranquillity, took their departure 
from the capital to watch the motions of Raja Singh a. Don 
John, the commander of the forces, jealous however of the 
accession of Don Philip in preference to himself, and judging 
the departure of the Portuguese a favorable moment to dis- 
patch his rival, availed himself of it, by administering poison 
to him. With the assistance of a large party of adherents, 
whom he allured by the most magnificent promised, he t{ius 
raised himself to the dignity of king, and ordered the Portu- 
guese to lose no time in departing from his territories, under 
pain of death. The Portuguese who were then posted at Gan- 
naruva, were not strong enough to offer any effectual resistance 
to the above imperious order ; and despairing of assistance, 
they surrendered the fortress and marched out with their side- 
arms, which were all that they were suffered to carry away. 

Don John db Melo, the commander of the Portuguese 

forces at Manaar, (to whom the critical situatioif of the 

garrison at Gannaruva had been communicated) arnved 

with reinforcements; but it wai^ too late to recover what 

Aad been last, and he therefore retreated to his former pos^t. 

KAN] The Ceylon Qazetteer. 125 

While affairs were ia this critical state. Rah Singh a 
bad rapidly assembled his forces at Sitawaka, and marching 
npon Kandy was met by Don John, with an equal force, 
at Walane; but having been furiously attacked by him, 
he fled with precipitation after half an hour's contest. Raja 
Singh A took this unexpected and ignominious defeat so much 
to heart, that in a moment of rage he ran a sharp thorn 
into his foot, which brought on a mortification, of which he 
died. As soon as Don John heard of the death of his foe, he 
concerted measures to reduce the whole Island under his autho- 
rity ; but he found an enemy to his views in Janiere Bandar a 
(Jay a SuryaJ, who usurping that part of the country which was 
under the dominion of his late master, entered into a treaty 
with the Portuguese, to whom he ultimately surrendered his 
kingdom, knowing that without their assistance he could never 
withstand the opposition of Don John. The Portuguese, 
elated with the prospect of becoming masters of the whole 
Island, lost no time in sending intelligence of Raja Singha's 
death to the viceroy of Goa'; and mentioning tha treaty into 
which they had entered with Janirre Ban dara, requested 
immediate and powerful reinforcements, to enable them 
effectually to repress the designs of Don John, and annex the 
dominion of the Island to the croWn of Portugal. To effect 
this purpose, Don Pedro de Sousa, in 1590, was sent to 
Ceylon with all the troops which the viceroy could spare, 
consisting of 1*250 whites, besidei^ mestizis and blacks; but 
before this reinforcement arrived, Janiere bad (with the 
assistance of the Portuguese garrisons of Galle and Colombo) 
made himself master of all the low countryi and Db Sousa 
haS therefore only to achieve the conquest of Kandy. At 
length the united forces mafched for this purpose ; and Don 
Jc^N, whose army was very much inferior to that of his adver- 
saff, came boldly to the conflict : but the Portuguese attacked 
hilpi Hiptft <30 much resolution apd fury, and . then followed 
np meir advantage with slich unremitting diligence, that 
PeN JoHNA with his queen^ was compelled to conceal 
himsMf hi the jungle, subsisting only otv tooVa ^xA >ftfe^^ 

128 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

of all the Portuguese fortresses, except those of Colombo and 
Gallc ; and thus became paramount over the island. He soon 
afterwards, in order to remove all question about bis title, 
married the princess Donna Catharina, and continued to 
enjoy an interval of repose, attending chiefly to the internal 
improvement and security of his dominions. At the expira- 
tion of three or four years, the Portuguese authorities at 6oa 
(to whom intelligence of the crippled state of their country- 
men in the island had been conveyed) sent a large reinforce- 
ment to their assistance, under the command of Don O vie do. 
This general first prevailed on the princes of the low lands to es- 
pouse his cause, and then marched a force towards Kandy ; but 
was met by Don John at Walane, and in the battle fought 
there, suffered so severe a defeat that he was compelled to 
retrace his steps to Colombo. 

In March 10^, the Portuguese again invaded the interior, 
and succeeded in reaching Kandy, from which Raja Singha 
2d. had previously retired. . Having satiated their avarice and 
cruelty they retreated to Gannaruva, where they pitched their 
camp. Raja Singha having previously caused the way to Wa« 
lane to be blocked up with large trees thrown across the paths, 
attacked them with impetuosity, and cut them to pieces, 
piling up their heads in the form of a pyramid as a trophy of 
victory : after this defeat we do not find that the Portuguese 
ever attempted the conquest of Kandy. 

During the successive reigns of Wimala Dharna Surya 
2nd., Srebwbera Prakrama Nak£Ndr\ Singha, and 
SrkbwijayaRaja Singha nothing occurred worthy of notice; 
but in 1765, during the reign of Kirti Sreb Raja Singha, 
(who succeeded Sree Wijaya Raja Singha) the Dutch 
declared war against him, invaded the interior, and made 
themselves masters of Kandy, after driving him away to 
Meddemaha Nuwera ; but they shortly afterwards abandoned 
their position, and retreated to the coast, alTouing hiohto reign 
at his capital quietly, upon certain concessions being mad^ 
to them. "^ 

• !*< 

KAN] The Ceyton Gazetteer. 199 

In the reign of Bajadi Raja Singha— the successor of the 
aforesaid king» the British captured the sea coasts from the 
Dutch, in which they received bis co-operatiun. Wheii the 
death of this king took place in 1798, Pilimi Talawa (then 
Prime Minister) raised to the throne the son of the late king's 
wife's sister, under the title of Sreb Wikrana Raja Singha^ 
and imprisoned (he other aspirants to it, that they might not 
plot against the new king. But the queen's brother, MooToo- 
&WAMY, fortunately made his escape to Colombo, and 


solicited the protection of the British government, which 
however was not granted, though he was well received, 
and allowed to reside at Jafinapatam. 

In 1799, Pilimi Talawa, the Prime Minister before 
mentioned, entertained a desire to remove the newly raised king 
from the throne, and to make himself the sovereign of the 
country. Accordingly in the interview he had with the Earl of 
Guilford, in December of the same year, he opened bis scheme 
to him, and made a direct request that he would co-operate 
with him in it ; but the Earl indignantly refused to listen to this 
insidious proposal. Pilimi Talawa, however, continued to 
urge his wishes on the British government, and in January 1800 
found means of more fully developing his projects to Mr. 
Bo YD, the Secretary to government ; when it was intimated to 
him, that the governor would never consent to depose a king, 
who had not offered any aggression against him. He then 
proceeded to ask what ivould be considered an aggression, and 
whether an invasion of the British territories by the Kandyans 
would not come under that denomination. From these circum- 
stances the kingV life could scarcely be thought safe, and 
hostilities were apprehended from the Kandyans. In order 
therefore to elude the arts of the Minister by a more perfect 
knowledge of the court, as well as to establish a permanent 
: interest there, to the advantage of the political and commercial 
arrangements of the British, the Earl deemed it expedient 
. to send Major General Macdqwall as ambassador to Kandy 
Ibt the following March ; but the embassy terminated without 
^iMbotiog the desix^ purpose. PiLiuv TC Ki«b?9i k»Vw^ w«^>^v 


180 The Ceylon Oazetteer. [KAN 

sfevered in raisinpr disturbances in the British territories, by 
sending (a\^e and ainbijrnous reports, with a view to compel 
the British to take up arms ai^ainst the king ; and in thcs« 
fruitless attempts a considerable time passed away. 

In April iPO'i, by the machinations of Pilimi Talawa, the 
Kandyans committed the first act of ags^ression^ by despoiling 
a party ofmcrchants belonging to Putlam (who had purchased 
areka nuts in the interior) of their property ; and as the autho- 
rities at the court wilfully delayed the necessary reparation 
of the outrage, notwithstanding their repeated promises to 
that effect, the British had no alternative but that of base 
submission to the enemy, or of open war; which was accord- 
ingly declared. The division of the British army from Colombo, 
under the command of Major General Magdowall, was put 
in motion on the 31st of January 1803; and, on the 4th of 
February, another division under Colonel Barbut, marched 
from Trincomalee. Both of these divisions, amounting to more 
than 3000 Europeans and Malayfs, arrived nearly at the same 
time at Kandy, and took possession of the place ; .but they 
found that the city had been evacuated the day before, and set 
lire to in many places:^ the king and his minister had 
fixed themselves at Hangramketty, a strong post, within 16 
miles of the capital. 

As soon as the inhabitants of the northern, and eastern' fron- 
tiers had intimated to the British government, through Colonel 
Barbut, their wish to have Mootooswamy (the fugitive 
> prince) placed on the throne, his highness was removed from his 
residence at Jaffna to Kandy, under a strong escort, and soon 
afterwards proclaimed king ; at the same time entering into a 
convention with the Earl of Guilford, to allow the British the 
sovereignty of the Seven Korles, the two hill forts of Giriagame 
and Galgadera, and a line of ground across his territories of a 
breadth soflScient to form a road from Colombo to Trincomalee ; 
they were further to be permitted to collect cinnamon in his 
territories west of Balanikanda, to cut wood in all his forests, 
with many other equally important privileges. But this prince, 
tl though well received by the inhabitants of the frontiers^ met 

KAN] ne Ceylon Gazetteer. 13 L 

^ith no support from the influential personages in the country ; 
and remained in the palace* enjoying the transient parade 
of royalty, surrounded only by bis own domestics^ and support- 
ed by the British army. 

During this time the fugitive king and his artful minister 
continued at Uangramketty ; and the latter had the effrontery 
to carry on a deceitful correspondence, under the mark of 
friendship, with Colonel Barbut, who commanded the British 
garrison at Kandy. He promised that if the Colonel would 
send a sufficient force to Hangramketty, he would deliver 
up the king into their hands. Accordingly .800 men, formed 
into two divisions (one commanded by Colonel Baillib, and 
the other by Lieut. Colonel Logan), marched by different 
routes on the L3th of March upon this expedition ; and 
after experiencing repeated attacks, and some loss, from 
parties of the enemy, who were placed in ambush on the way, 
they at last reached their appointed destination ; but the king 
and his wily minister bad previously taken their departure. 
Colonel Baillib now suspecting the treacherous design of the 
minister, by drawing the British into the country, resolved that 
it was fruitless to pursue the king any further ; and therefore, 
after setting fire to the palace, returned with as much expedi- 
tion as possible to Kandy, before the minister had time to 
complete his nefarious schemes. 

After this, the Kandyans began to discover symptoms of . 
more determined hostility, taking up their posts in ambush 
round the city, and destroying every straggler that came 
in their way ; so that the British garrison soon found themselves 
in embarrassing and perilous circumstances ; for all communi- 
cation by means of tappal between Trincomalee and Kandy 
was entirely cut off, and a reward offered by the minister of 
ten rupees for the head of an European, and five for that of 
every native soldier in the British service. 
. In this situation of affairs the rainy season commenced ; and 
PiLiMi Talawa well knowing that the sickness occasioned. by 
it would soon reduce the number of his enemies, determined 
io make further overtures for negoc\8L\iou» m ^i&^'ti ^^^s^ \&3)^ 

188 ne CeyUm Gazettur. [KAN 

as possible^ to relax the vigilance of the British, and to make 
still more sore of their destrnctiom He therefore dispatched 
two letters to propose pacific arrangements to the government 
of Colombo ; and at the same time sent the Second Minister 
into the city of Kandy with a firelock and match wrapped up 
in white muslin, as an emblem of peace. General Magoo- 
WALL, who was then at the head of the garrison, received this 
Minister with marks of the most respectful attention ; and 
in their conferences it was agreed that the fugitive king should 
be delivered over to the care of the British government ; that 
PiLiNi Talawa should be invested with supreme power in 
Kandy ; that he should pay annually 30,000 rupees to Mooroo- 
8WAMY, who was to reside at Jaffnapattam; that fort Mac- 
dowaCl, with the surrounding district, the road to Trinco- 
malee, and the province of the Seven Korles, should be ceded to 
the British ; and that there should be a cessation of hostilities 
between the contracting powers. 

Owing probably to the sense of security, which a trust in 
these engagements had unfortunately inspired. General Mao- 
dowall left Kandy on the ist of April 1803, taking with 
him H^M« dlst regt., the Ceylon Native infantry, and part 
of the detachment of Bengal artillery; at the same time, 
detachments of H.M. 19th and Malay regiments set out on 
their march to Trincomalee. The garrison left in Kandy 
consisted of 700 Malays and 300 Europeans, beside a con- 
siderable number of sick, who could not with safety be 

The day after General Macdowall had retired from 
Kandy Pilimi Taj^awa eager to seize his prey, advanced 
vrith a large force to within three miles of that place; but 
he still masked his ultioiate designs, and amused the govern- 
ment at Colombo with overtures for a definitive treaty of 
peace; in order to effect which the Earl of Guilford was 
persuaded to admit the Minister to a personal conference, 
on the 3rd of May, at Dambadiniya. It is said that at this 
wnference the Minister had contenHplated the caplitrt of 
^tkm £wrl; but if this was his design^ it was fnistrtfted tgr 

KA N] The Ceylon Gazettes. 188 

the strength of the Earl's escort, and by the unexpected arrival 
of Colonel Barbut from Kandy^ with a detachment of 300 

Notwithstanding this plot^ which was not suspected until 
afterwards^ PiLiMi Talawta was so expert in dissimulation^ 
that it was now thought he was sincere, and that he had 
at length determined to act with ^ood faith ; and to give color 
to his conduct^ he ratified with his signature and seal the terms 
of convention which nad been previously arrani^ed at Kandy 
between General Maguovitall and the Second Minister. 

The KandyanSy however, paying little attention to this treaty^ 
drew their lines nearer to the city ; and on the morning of 
the 24th of June attacked the palace, in which the British 
troops, under the command of Major Davie, were quartered. 
The enemy were repulsed, and retired for an interval to 
the rising grounds near the city, from which they annoyed 
the garrison with their fire. The palace did not at that time 
contain more than twenty Europeans fit for duty^ and there 
were 120 men of the 10th regt. in hospital, who were too 
sick to be moved. The Kandyans gathering courage from the 
knowledge of the reduced and sickly state of the garrison^ 
rushed forward in overwhelming numbers; Major Davib, 
despairing of success, offered to capitulate ; and for this purpose 
be repaired, with Captain KToukadebn, to the quarters of 
PiLiMi Talawa, who was encamped at a considerable dis- 
tance from the city. It was agreed that the town, with 
the ammunition and stores, should be delivered up to the 
Kandyans ; and that the British should march out with their 
arms, on the road leading to Trincomalee. On the return 
of Major Davib (after the Minister had signed the capitula- 
tion), the garrison left the capital in the evening of the 
same day. The troops consisted of 14 European officers, 
20 English soldiers, 250 Malays, L40 Gun-lascars, with prince 
MooToiNSWAMY and his attendants. They proceeded to the 
didtauce of one mile and a half on the road to Trincomalee, 
irhere they halted for the night on thd banks of the Mahawelli 
gitfiga. The next morning they in vaia ^MMsa^^XA^ \» cscma 

13 1 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAN 

tho river as. there was neither boat nor raft, and the Kandyans 
vho were now assembled round them demanded of the Major to 
deliver up Mootooswamy ; and in that case only would he be 
furnished with conveyances. The Major at first refused to listen 
to these dishonorable proposals, which were in direct violation 
of the late treaty ; but was however ultimately compelled to 
comply with their demand, and the unfortunate prince being 
taken before the king was immediately executed. Notwith- 
standing this concession on the part of the British troops, 
they were not all )wed to pass the river; and on the following 
day, having been first deprived of their arms, were conducted 
towards the town, and all most cruelly massacred by the 
Kandyans, — with tho exception of the Major, and Captain 
RuMLBY, who were spared ; as also such Malays who accepted 
the offer to serve the king. Captain Humphrey with another 
officer escaped. Before the massacre which we have just 
mentioned was perpetrated, all the sick, to the number of 120 
men, who had been left in the hospital at Kandy on the faith 
of the capitulation, were murdered in cold blood ; and after the 
termination of these tragic acts, Pilimi Talawa ordered 
guns to be fired, and rejoicings to be made, to celebrate the 
victory which he had obtained. 

From this period, until the middle of 1815, a clesultory war- 
fare was carried on between the Kandyans and the British; 
the former also made an ineffectual attempt to take Colombo, 
-—but after this, hostilities were suspended for an interval, as 
both parties were weary of the contest • 

The king now at peace, cruelly oppressed his own sub- 
jects ; and among his flagrant acts of injustice, the horrid 
barbarity against the wife and children of his ex-minister 
Ehylapola will lonor be remembered with indignation. Dis- 
gusted and terrified by the conduct of the king, the chiefs and 
people were ripe for revolt, and subsequently solicited the 
protection of the British government against the injuries they 
were hourly subjected to under their oppressive rulers. This, 
combined with the acts of aggression which the king had 
perpetrated upon several British subjects trading in his domi- 

KAX] T%e Ceylon Gazetteer. 185 

nions, induced Sir Robert Brown rigg to declare war on tW 
10th of January 1815* The kinp;, insensible to his perilous 
situation, and of the general disaffection of bis subjects, 
remained in a state of torpid inactivity, until he found the 
British troops marching from ail points towards the capital, 
a)id who were joined by Molligoddb, the prime minister. 
He then fled into the jungles (with a part of his family 
and suite) near Medamaha Nuwera, where he was captured 
by a party of his own subjects on the I8ih of February, and 
delivered into the hands of Lieutenant Colonel Hook, who 
commanded the nearest division of the British army. He 
was soon afterwards sent under an escort to Colombo, and 
secured within the wallvS of the garrison in the most commodi- 
ous dwelling that could be procured. In January LS1(> he was 
conveyed' to Madras on board H. M« ship Cornwallis, 
R. O'Brien Esq« captain, where he landed on the 22d of 
February, and proceeded to Vellore; in the fortress of which 
place he remained a state prisoner until the 30th of January 
1832, when he died t>f dropsy. ( Philalethes, Corditier, Gran- 
ville, i^c ) 

Kannya (virgin)y a place about 7 miles north west of Trin- 
comalee, celebrated for its hot-wells, which occasionally 
attract visitors. There are five wells, of which however 
only two are springs, the others being formed by the overflow- 
ing of the former. Dr. Christie, of H. M. 80th regiment^ 
who examined the heat of these wells, found that they varied 
from 98 «, to lOGj© Farenheit, according to their different 
depths; but in the London Encyclopaedia it is stated that 100* 
is the maximum. The wells are all built of stone ; some square, 
others of a circular form, rather less than two feet in 
diameter and in general about five feet deep. They are sur- 
rounded by a wall six feet high, which has only one entrance. 
The water is very pure, with slight traces of common salt, 
carbonic acid gas^ and azote, and deemed efficacious in 
rheumatism and cutaneous diseases. In the neighbourhood 
of tlie weUs are the remains of a temple a^ct^dt V^ QiK:t^i&^^> 

188 The Ceylm Gazetteer. [KAR 

and a rivnlet in \?hich the overflow of water from the wells 
empties itself by means of a drain ; and which rivulet contains 
a mixtare of cold and hot water, so that its temperature 
is somewhat less than tepid. The situation of the place was 
formerly very unhealthy during the wet season, on account of 
the swamps and jungles with which it was surrounded* 
Facing the west side there are several hills, and on the summit 
of one is shewn the remains of the tombs of a giant and 
his son. (Cordiner, b^c.) 

Karadive, a small island in the gulf of Manaar, 13 miles 
north west of Calpentyn. it is about 9 miles long, and from 
one mile to two miles broad ; sandy, and almost barren ; but on 
account of its advantageous situation for fishing, it forms the 
rendezvous for fishermen from Manaar and Negombo during 
the north east monsoon. It is commonly believed that this 
island was formerly connected with the peninsula of Calpen- 
tyn, and that the inhabitants of the latter place were wont to 
resort to a Hindoo temple which then stood there, but 
since separated from it by the encroachment of the sea. There 
is no timber on the island, but the trees consist of keeri, and 
shelter large herds of deer* A pearl bank of some extent has 
been newly discovered off Karadive through the exertions 
of Gabriel Casib Ch itt y, Modliar of the district, and a 
small fishery of fifty boats for five days took place upon 
it in March 163 >• 

Karadive (Amsterdam), a smalt island on the west of 

'Jaffna, in f^o 5 i' north latitude, and in 80 oT east longitude. 

It is five miles in length, and two in breadth, and contains 

5'22;i inhabitants, who maintain themselves by tilling the 

ground, breeding of cattle, and fishing. It is divided into 

three parts, in each of which there is a temple built of coral 

stones and chunam, and vaulted at the top with the same 

' material in the form of a dome. The arm of the sea which 

'separates it from J afi^n a is very shallow, and fordable at all 

times, except duriog^ the north east monsoon. l*he soil is 


' KAVC] Tht Ceylon Gazetteer. 187 

«andy, but prodaces paddy, cocoanuts, palmyra, jack, mangos, 
and illippe nuts — \vhich latter yield a kind of oil much 
used in lighting houses. It appears that this island has been 
for a long period noted for its chaya roots, which Baldmv» 
prefers to all others of the kind in India. Chanks are found 
in great abundance along the coast ; but for some years the 
fishery has been abandoned. The only public buildings on 
the island are two store houses (one for the reception of the 
paddy tithes, and the other for the chanks) and an old Dutch 
church, which is in a dilapidated state. This place was 
Formerly resorted to by the ships of the Dutch East India 
company, to furnish themselves with fuel, of which there 
is a great abundance. 

Karkuchena, a considerable village and estate belonging to 
the family of the late Simon de Rosairo Pulle of Calpentyn, 
is situated in the province of Akkarapattoo, on the west side 
of the gulf of Calpentyn, about G miles north west from 
Piitlam, by water. It embraces an extent of upwards of four 
miles, and is almost entirely planted with cocoanut trees. 
It was formerly a complete jungle, and was cleared and 
planted by Mr. Rosairo about forty years ago. There is also 
a Roman catholic chapel, founded by the lady of the above 
individual, which has been lately much improved, principally 
at the expence of one of the present proprietor]^. 

Kamawalpattoo, the name of two provinces formerly belong- 
ing to the Wanny, but now annexed to the coUectorate of 
Jaffna. They are, for the sake of distinction, called the Kar- 
nawalpattoo North, and the Kamawalpattoo South, and 
their united population amounts to 638 souls,— consisting of 
Vellalars, Karreyars, and Chandas, each of which classes 
has a Modliar of its own caste, 

Karself a village about 8 miles north west of Manaar, at a 
teosiderable distance from the sea. It contains the ruinB of n^. 

140 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KAT 

A grand festival is held ia the month of Jaly> and continues 
for several days ; and according to a long standing cnstom, 
Moormen are obliged to bear torches before the image when it 
is taken out and carried in procession. 

Skanda has several names in Sanscrit; bat he is here 
commonly styled ** Kadirama^ or " the Lord of the rays,** 
he having sprong from an assemblage of rays, emitted from the 
eyes of Siva for the purpose of accomplishing the destruction 
of the Asuras. He is represented with six beads and twelve 
hands, in each of which he holds a different weapon; and 
his Vdhane (or vehicle,) is a peacock, which is hence reckoned 
iacred by his votaries. Of his two consorts, namely Deivane 
and Valli, the latter is represented as having been nurtured 
by a Weda female, and the Wedas are therefore particularly 
attached to his worship. 

Katchay, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Pachellepalli, situated on the lake which extends from 
Jaffnapatam to Mullativoe. It comprehends a well cultivated 
tract, diversified with small jungles; and has a population 
of 2587 souls. 

Kattukolampatioo, a province of Trincomalee, about 25 miles 
long, and from 8 to 18 miles broad. It is bounded on (he east 
by the sea ; on the west by the Wanny ; on the north by Tenna- 
marawadipattoo ; and on the south by Tamballagampattoo, 
It abounds in vast tracts of low lands, calculated for the 
culture of paddy; but, for want of people, a great portion 
of them is neglected. The ancient inhabitants of this pro- 
vince were part of the emigrants from the Coromandel coast 
when the temple at Trincomalee was building, and wer«i 
in consequence liable to be called out for its service. 

Kaymel, a village on the northern bank of the Maha oya, 
close to its fall into the sea at the southern extremity of 
Chilaw, chiefly inhabited by fishermen. It is called by the 
Singhalese Kammale, which in that language^ as well as 

KIW] The Ceylon Gazetteer. lit 

in the Tamal, signifies a '^smith's forge;" whence it ban^ 
been inferred that a mechanic of this class exercised his trader 
here in early times. It possesses some plantations of cocoanut 
trees, and the inhabitants cultivate tobacco to a great extent 

Kaythady, a Village in the parish of Kavagacherry, in the 
district of Jaffna, remarkable for a very large temple sacred 
to PuLLEYAR, or Ganesu, v^hich is supported by the family 
of the Modliar ysho resides in the neighbourhood. There is 
a magnificent car in which the idol is placed, and drawn 
round the temple in procession during the principal festival, 
which begins on the sixth day of the moon, in the month 
of May, and lasts ten days. 

KirimettyapattoOf a province of Demelepattoo, bounded 
on the east by Medapattoo ; on the west by Rajawanni- 
pattoo ; on the south by Peruwellipattoo ; and on the north by 
the Kala oya. It has a hill of considerable size, called 
Mottamale, or ^' the bald peak" which is seen while sailing off 
Putlam. A small river, called Nalanerl oya, which rises in the 
Medapattoo, runs through the province and joins the Mee oya 
near Welleriyagamme. There are 22 villages, and 952 inhabi- 
tants. Paddy and fine grain are much cultivated, and there 
is a manufacture of coarse cloth. 

Kirinde Oya, a river which has its source in the hills near 
Angberete, and after a tortuous course, in a south east and 
southerly direction, falls into the sea at Mahagam, 9 miles 
south of Palloottoopane. 

Kittoolgalle, a village and rest house on the road from 
Colombo to Kandy, by Ambegammena, 2| miles higher up 
than Talgamme. 

Kiwulagedera, in the province of Lower Uwa, the tiativt 
village of the Mohattale who, having escaped from jail in Kan- 
dy, afterwards became a leader among the insurgents in 1817. 
In October 1817, Major Macdonald sustained a smart atudi^ 

142 The Ceylon Gazetteer. TKOO 

ftom tho WecUis near this village, in which one private of the 
73d regt. was killed, the Major himself and two soldiers slightly 
wounded, and Assistant surgeon S rEVBN«0N severely. ( Ceylon 

Ktaly, a small villa&:e and rest house on the road to Trinco- 
malee, uO miles south east of Jafifnapatam. It is noted for a 
Roman catholic church, dedicated to St. Jambs the Greater, 
which attracts a great namber of pilgrims from different parts of 
the [hland. The image of the saint is every year, after 
the termination of the feast day, set on a car and drawn 
along the streets, in the same manner as the Hindoos parad# 
their idol at Ramisseram. 

Kokatticholy, a village in the province of Manmoone, in the 
Batticalo district, situated a few miles west of Moodelkooda. 
It has a very ancient temple dedicated to Sranda, built 
of stone, but merely thatched with straw and enclosed by a low 
mud wall. The festival at this temple takes place in the month 
Y)f August, and on that occasion the idol is carried in proces- 
sion on a splendid car, attended by a band of dancing girls^ 
set apart for that purpose* 

Kokelay, a village situated on the banks of a lake of the 
same, name on the road to Trincomalee, 16 miles from 
Alambel. It has a rest house which stands in a grassy plain, 
several hundred yards from the lake. 

Kombokepattoo, a division of Rygam Korle, in the district 
of Caltura, having 17 villages, and 864 inhabitants. 

Kombocan (Kumukan), a river which falls into the sea closd 
to a village of the same name in Mahagampattoo, and sepa- 
rates that district from Batticalo. It has its source in the 
mountains near BaduUa, and its banks are covered with 
fine forest trees. In its progress to the sea, in a south easterly 
direction, it traverses nearly thirty miles. 

Koodremale (Horse Mountain), a hill on the sea coast 
of Pomparippooj 19 miles north east of Calpentyn^ supposed to 

K A P] 7%e Ceylon Gazetteer. 14S 

be the Hippurus, or Hipporus, mentioned by Pliny (lib. vi, 
cap. 22) ; the port to which a freedman of Annius Plocamus 
(ivho farmed the customs of the Red sea in the reign of the 
Emperor Claudius) was unexpectedly driven, after having 
been blown off the coast of Arabia in a violent tempest, 
and whose passage is said to have been fifteen days. A con- 
siderable settlement ouce existed in the neighbourhood of 
the hill, formed by Mahomed an emigrants from Arabia, as 
early as the eighth century ; their brethren at Manaar and 
Mantotte afterwards received from them large supplies of 
pearls, which were most probably fished on its coast, as 
the abundance of old shelLs on the beach strongly testify 
to the fact of extensive pearl fisheries having been carried 
on there. In the woods beneath the hill, which now harbour 
innumerable wild beasts and reptiles, the popular traditions of 
the natives trace the site of a royal residence, once occupied 
by an Amazon princess named Alliarasany, whose amorous 
intrigues with one of the heroes of the Mahabndrat, constitute 
the subject of a very interesting drama. On the north side of 
the hill there is a small mosque covered uith cadjans erected 
over the tomb of a Mahomedan saint, and the navigators of 
his sect invariably touch here on their way to and from the 
coast, to make an offering at his shrine, in order to secure 
a safe voyage. 

Koondesdle, a small town situated on the banks of the 
Jdabawelli ganga, on the road to BaduUa, about 4 miles east 
of Kandy. It was the residence of several of the Kaadyao 
sovereigns, and Narbndra Singha, who made it the seat of 
his government, built a very handsome palace there. 

Koorroowittiaf a village and rest house oa the road from 
Colombo to BaduUa, by Avisahawill^, about 7 miles from 

Kapay^ a viHage and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
nfWaligam, situated to the north of Jaffnapatam. It pro* 
dacss paddy and fine grain, and abounds in ah&»^ ^sh«i 

144 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [K IT Bt 

sort of frnit trees, particularly the palmyra. The population 
is 5075, and there is an extensive pottery, 

Korlepattoq, a province of Batticalo, extending along the 
coast on its north side, from the Vendeloos bay, and termina- 
ted by the Vergel ganga, which separates it from the district 
of Trincomalee. The villages are eight in number, but not 
so well inhabited as those to tlie southward of Batticalo. The 
face of the country exhibits a complete forest, infested with 
elephants, buffaloes, and other denizens of the woods. In 
this part of the country is a numerous horde of Wedas, 
who live in small hovels in the j'ln^le, and subsist on roots, 
deer*s flesh, and honey, and also fish, when they can catch 
it. They speak Tamul and Singhalese, but both in a barba- 
rous way, and in a wild tone. (Harvard,) 

Kottadeniya, a village situated on the left bank of the 
Maha oya, on the road to Negombo, 28 miles south west 
of Kurnagalle. In 1803, a small redoubt was erected here by 
General Macdowall, and called ** Fort Frederick*' in honor 
of Frederick, Earl of GtJiLPORD, who was then governor of 

Kosgodde, a villRge of ^ome consequence on the south coast, 
on the read to Galle, about 20 miles south of Caltora. It 
is well populated and has some stills for distilling arrack. 

Kottapettia, a village in the road from Colombo to BaduUa, 
by Avisaha\vill6, i:) miles from Ratnapoora. 

Kumarawannipattoo, a province of Demelapattoo^ part of 
0f which has been lonj^ united to the district of Putlam. It is 
bounded on the east by the Seven Korles; on the west 
mnd north by Rajawannipattoo ; and on the south by Ane- 
wulundanpattoo, and is about '^0 miles long, and from 2 to 
4 miles broad. This province is very much covered with 
jungle, and the inhabitants amount to 852, composed of 
Singhalese, Malabars^ and Moors. 

KUR] TTie Ceylon Gazetteer. 145 

Kurisyipetty, a village in the province of Akkarapattoo^ 
situated on the borders of a large plain called Tattavelly, about 
3 miles south west of Calpentyn. This village was formerly 
much resorted to by the Roman catholics, on account of a 
church dedicated to St. Anthony, which stood there. Its 
inhabitants carry on a manufacture of cloth on a small scale. 

Kurnagalle, the chief town and seat of the Agent of 
government in the Seven Korles, is situated on a gently rising 
ground at the base of a contiguous chain of huge rocks, at the 
distance of 58 miles north east of Colombo, and 30 miles north 
west of Kandy. The Singhalese are very much divided in opi- 
nion as to the true etymology of the name ; — some derive it from 
the circumstance of a part of its original inhabitants having 
come over from Kuruksbetra, or Kuru-ratta, (the scene of the 
bloody wars between the Pandava and Kaurava princes) 
and settled there ; — others from kuruni, ''a bushel," and gala, ''a 
rock," alledging, that the dhatoo, or relic of their Budha, was 
concealed in a bushel, under the cover of a rock, somewhere in 
the neighbourhood ; — some again, from the rock Kuruniagala, 
or " beetle rock," on which the Wihare belonging to the place 
is situated ; but these derivations are fanciful, and grounded 
only on vague traditions. It would appear from the works 
in the Elu and Pali languages, that the name is formed of an 
Elu compound, Kuruna-gala^ that is, '* Elephant rock," which 
the Pali writers translate Hastiscuta-peora. 

The town is composed of a single broad street, intersected 
by a number of smaller ones. The houses* excepting those be- 
longing to government, are generally covered with cadjans, and 
the greatest part of them occupied by native tradesmen from the 
sea coasts. There is a tolerably good bazar, and it forms tho 
principal mart to which the inhabitants of the interior bring 
their rice, coffee, pepper, and other produce of their lands^ 
to barter for salt, salt fish, and cotton stuffs, which are import- 
ed from the maritime districts. In the town there are three 
places of worship,— one, a very neat building, belonging to 
the Weslejan Missionaries^ and erected with the permifi(uaiL<)£ 


146 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [KUR 

government in 1821 ; another belonging to the Roman catholics ; 
and the third to the Mahomedaps, who are very numerous. The 
country around is exceedingljf fertile, and a large quantity 
of paddy is raised by means of a tank; the water of which is 
confined by a strong embankment* ' It has also an extensive 
plantation of cinnamon, and on the whole exhibits the most 
charming rural scenery ever beheld. 

Knmagalle was once the capital of the kings of Ceylon, but 
when, and for what series of years it retained that distinction^ 
is not generally known. It is affirmed, that after the expulsion 
of the Malabars from the Island, about the year of Budha 
1776, the country fell into an unsettled state, and each prince 
erected a kingdom for himself, making the place of his previous 
residence the seat of government ; under these circumstances 
Bhuwanbra Bahoo 2d. is said to have made Kumagalle 
the capital in 1319 ; but in less than twenty seven years the seat 
of government was transferred to Gampola. There is however 
a very popular tradition, and which is generally received^ 
respecting the cause of its abandonment ; which, though difiering 
materially from the foregoing account, is worthy of record, 
because the individual to whom it relates, is still worshipped 
by the Singhalese on one of the hills in the vicinity of the 
place, under the title of Galbandare. The king who 
last reigned at Kurnagalle (perhaps Wejaya Bahoo 5th) 
left, besides a son by his queen consort, another by one of the 
inmates of his harem, who was of the Moorish tribe. The 
king's death occurring during the minority of his lawful 
son, the son of the Moorish woman (named Vasthimi Kuma- 
REYA) gained over the ministers to his side, by liberally 
bestowing on them the immense riches which were at his com- 
mand ; he then laid claim to the vacant throne, and succeeded 
in establishing himself on it, to the exclusion of the lawful 
heir; who, despairing of his ability to recover his right, 
privately retired from the capital, and lived in disguise 
at Kalundawe, in Udapalla KorIe« Vasthimi continued 
to reign for some time with great popularity, but his predi- 
lection for the faith of his mother, isoon gave offence to bis 

KUR] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 147 

Badhist ministers, who therefore formed a plot to assassi- 
nate him, which they very soon effected, by circulating a report 
that they intended to P9i^^|^ meeting of the priests on 
the top of a hill in thi^^pij^rhood, for expounding the 
Bana ; and they invit^^JT^^STHinii to honor the sacerdotal as- 
sembly wH^>M^iyKi^lS^ of the 
treacherbtils^^^ign w him by the ministers, 

accepted the 4pvitation,'^itwnMc^ alone; but scarcely 

had he reached ih0 djammit, when a band of ruffians, agree- 
ably to prii^f^ffifgement, rushed forward and precipitated 
him headlong down the hill, and thus put an end to his 
life. After the murder of the usurper, the ministers made 
inquiry for the expelled prince ; and, according to their cus- 
tom, having well caparisoned the state elephant, let it go 
blindfold to find him, themselves following with the usual 
appendages of royalty. The sagacious animal, it is said, after 
perambulating one village after another, at length discovered 
him at Kalunddwe, engaged in ploughing the field of his 
landlord. As soon as the prince perceived the state elephant, 
and the multitude of people following, he attempted to conceal 
himself under a rock in the neighbourhood, apprehending that 
the usurper was in quest of him; but the animal approached the 
place where he was concealed, and making a profound bow 
to him as the lawful sovereign of the country, took him up 
gently with his proboscis, and placing him on his back 
conveyed him to Kumagalle. On the arrival of the prince 
the nobles intimated to him their intention to raise him to 
the throne of his father; and on his acquiescing, he was 
crowned king of Ceylon with great pomp, and an unusual 
demonstration of joy on the part of the people. A Sloorish 
usurper having polluted the sanctity of the city, by sitting 
on the throne, the new king proposed to remove his court 
somewhere else, and to abandon the present place entirely. 
The reason appearing good to the inhabitants, they all agreed 
to the proposal of the king, and he accordingly renjoved 
his court to Dambadeniya. In consequence of the removal 
^ the seat of government^ the nobler aud chiefs g^adu»U^ 

148 The Ceylon Gazetteer. • [K U Ek 

deserted the place and assembled at the new capital; and 
from this time it dwindled into a small village of Darawas, and 
remained in that humble condition, nntil the British govern- 
Bient (after the conqaest of Kandy) fixed upon it as the next 
place of importance in the interior, and established a cntcherry 

Kurundu Oya (Tlie Cinnamon River), a river of Walapannc, 
which flows about one mile above the village of Tibbattoo- 
godde, intersecting the road from Kandy to Badulla through 
that province. In 1817 the rebels had erected near this river a 
strong work, consisting of a wall about 9 feet high and 6 thick, 
with a rampart ascending behind to a stone banquette; but 
it was demolished by Ensign Li dwell of the 7:^d regt^ who 
was sent with a detachment for that purpose from Tibbattoo- 
{odde by Lieut. Colonel Hook. 

Kurtiwikolam (The Bird*s Tank), a solitary village, situated 
on the side of the new road to Colombo, about 5 miles south 
east of Putlam. In the neighbourhood of this village are several 
ancient and very extensive ruins, covered with thick forests, 
which supply the best satin wood and ebony on the island. 


Lewelle, a villag-e and ferry on the road to Teldenia, one 
mile south east of Kandy, 

Lunuwila (a salt lake), a village in the district of Putlam, 
alluded to in a samiasoS the kin^ Buwaneka Bahoo 7th, as 
the residence of the Mookwa chieftain Navar\tna Wannya. 
It lies, half way between the tappil posts of Andipane and 
Madramkooly, and is now a complete desert. 


Madampe, a village of Wellabi>ddepattoo, in the district 
Of Galle, situated on the banks of a river of the same namo^ 

MAD] 'The CeyUm Gazetteer. 149 

which falls ioto the sea 7 miles below Hickgodde. It contains 
nearly iVDOO inhabitants^ and the conntry around is very beau- 
tiful and fertile^ abounding in almost every description of 
oriental fruits and vegetables. 

Madampe (MahadampaX a village of Tagampattoo^ in the 
district of Chilaw, 8 miles south east of Chilaw. It has 
numerous groves of cocoanut trees, beautifully interspersed 
with paddy fields, and contains a tolerably large population^ 
with two small Wihares^ supported by the inhabitants. The 
village was formerly the capital of a subordinate principality ; 
and the king Taniwalla Bahoo, or Tamwalla Abhaya, 
who was the last that resided at the plaee» is said to have 
embellished it with many splendid Wihares^ of which, however^ 
there is scarcely a single vestige now remaining. 

Maddawallatenne, a military post, situated on a rising 
ground at the foot of the Gerriagamme pass. Id miles north 
east of Kurnagalle, and 12 miles north west of Kandy. It is 
the station of the Agent of government, and the ofiicer com* 
manding Harispattoo and Tumpane ; and has a rest house for 
the accommodation of travellers. Paddy fields, which are 
terminated by fine wooded and rocky heiirhts, almost surround 
the place, and greatly contribute to the beauty of its scenery. 

Maderegamuwe^ a village situated on the right bank of 
the Maha oya, in the road from Kurnagalle to Negombo, 12 
miles from Kaymel. 

Madoolla, a village of Walapanne, in the road from Kandy 
to B^dulla through that province, '4^ miles from the former and 
16 miles from the latter place. It was under a Bogah tree at 
this village that the unfortunate Mr. Ki£NN£DY fell in Ibl7. 

Madramkooly^ a post station and rest house, situated in 
a large plain to the left of the Quiparawa canal, about 9 miles 
south ot Futlam, The resi house is a neat compact building,^ 

159 Tke CeyUm Gazetteer. ' [MAR 

erected under the direction of Mr. Templer. the late coI-> 
lector of the district. Ti^ sarroandinff coiiiilllry bears no 
traoes of cultivation^ ^1^^ now completely covered with 
jungle^ in which elephants ahd deer abound* 

Mahabola, a small neat village on the high road from 
Colombo to Negombo, 6 miles from the former, and 17 from the 
latter place. Here is a large Roman catholic church, and also 
a school belonging to the Wesleyan Missionaries. It is parti- 
cularly famous for its pine apples. 

Mahagampattoo, a wild and uncultivated district on the 
south east coast, between Matora and Batticalo, 55 miles long, 
and from 11 to 19 miles broad. It contains i)8 villages, but so 
thin is the population, that the whole in 1814 amounted only to 
1832. The face of the country exhibits nothing but inhospitable 
deserts and low sandy plains without water, and unfit for culti- 
vation. The district merits notice only for its salt leways, 
the monopoly of which is said to produce 10,000/. a year. 
It was formerly a separate collectorate ; but since 1817 has 
been incorporated with Girrawaypattoo, under the name of the 
district of Tangalle. 

Mahagam (Maagama)^ the principal village in the above 
district, situated near a large plain, 14 1 miles north east 
of Hambantotte. It is much celebrated in the Singhalese 
history, having been once the capital of a subordinate princi* 
pality founded by Mahanaaga, a brother of the king Dbvemi- 
PBATissA, and where these princes took refuge when the 
northern portion of the Island was invaded by the Malabars • 

Maha Oya, a considerable river which rises in the mountains 
bounding the valley of Haoguramketty to the southward^ and 
after a meandering course of nearly 70 miles in a west 
north west and south westerly direction falls into the sea 
at Kaymel, separating the district of Chilaw from that of 

MAH] * X%e Ceylon Gazetteer. lAl 

MahapattoOf a division of Pasdoom Korlo^ in the district of 
Caltura, having 84 villages and 2704 inhabitants. 

Mahawelli Ganga(MahawAlooia GangaX a river of the first 
magnitude in Ceylon^ the name of which Mr. Chamher8 (vid# 
Asiatic Researches, vol. i. p. 147) conjectures to have been 
derived from Maha Bali, one of the heroes of Hindoo ro- 
mance; while Dr. Davy, with much more probability, traces 
its etymology to a Singhalese compound, implying ^' the sandy 
river.'* It has its source in the Nuwera Ellia mountains, and 
traversing the valley of Kotmale, under the name of Kotmale 
Ganga, incorporates itself, near Pasbage, with a smaller branch 
that issues from the base of Adam's Peak; it then passes 
through Peradeniya, a village about 4 miles distant from Kandy, 
where a beautiful bridge of one arch, and 205 feet span, con- 
nects the Colombo road with the approach to Kandy. Between 
Kandy and Bintenne the river rushes down a descent of upwards 
of lOOU feet, receiving by the way a great accession of waters. 
At Bintenne (at the foot of the mountains) it may be considered 
at its greatest magnitude ; and when taken at a medium height, 
where the water at the ford is about 5 feet deep, the river from 
bank to bank is 340 feet* After a slow and tedious course 
through the country of Bintenne, it divides itself into two 
branches; the smaller branch, called the Vergel ganga, falls 
into the sea 25 miles south of Trincomalee, and the larger runs 
into the great bay of Trincomalee, and retains the name of tho 
parent stream. 

In March of 1832, the Mahawelli ganga was explored by 
R. Brooke, Esq. under instructions from government, who 
ascertained that if the obstructions at Kurijamoone and 
Goorookal were removed, it might be made navigable at4east 
as far as Kalinga, 80 miles from the mouth. 

Maharre, a village of Adikaripattoo, in the Hina Korlc^ 
84 miles from Colombo, on the road to Kandy. It has a 
populous neighbourhood and some good houses. It is a post 
station, and possesses a rest house with an excellent barrack 

153 The Ceylon Gazetteer, [M A. £ 

for soldiers. The inhabitants carry on a trade with Colombo 
in cattle^ which they obtain from the interior. 

Majleltj/, a village and parish of Jaflfna, in the province 
of Waligam, adjoining to Tellipally, and north east of Malla- 
gam. The popalation amounts to 3W4H. The soil being 
composed of a whitish clay, yields inferior crops of paddy ; but 
it compensates for this deficiency by the great quantity of 
fine grains, yams, and tobacco, with which it abounds. Here 
there was formerly a very splendid church and parsonage 
house, erected by the Portus:uese. It has at present a school 
belonging to the American Missionaries* 

Makawilta, a small province and village of the same name 
in the district of Matura, thus called from a singular accident. 
When the famous temple at Dondra-head was in progress^ the 
inhabitants of this village were ordered to display their 
generosity by feeding the crows. The words used in calling 
them fka ka witia) were uttered so often, that the name was 
afterwietrds given to the village, with the change of the first 
letter. (Wesley an Missionary Reports). 

Makkoon (Makgona)^ a village with a small harbour, situa- 
ted in the district of Caltura. The majority of the inhabitants 
are Moors, and possess a great number of Jatrah dhonies, 
in which they export copperahs, cordage, and areka nuts to 
the coast of Coromandel. There is a distillation of arrack 
carried on by the Singhalese, and the fishery in the neigh- 
bourhood is very considerable. 

Mallagam, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province of 
Walitram, containing 4487 inhabitants. It has a red soil, and 
produces abundant crops of fine grains, yams, sweet potatoes, 
and tobacco, but no paddy, it possesses a numerous breed of 
black cattle and sheep. The village lies north of Jaffnapatam, 
has a court house, and is the station of a Magistrate. There is 
a daily market for fruit, and vegetables which is often throng- 
pd to excess. 

MAN] ThB C%yhn Odzetteeri 15^ 

Manaatt an island off the north west coast of Ceylon, 
separated from it only by a narrow arm of the sea, 
varying in breadth from two to three miles at high water. 
It lies in 9» 6' north latitude, and 7})*58> east longitude;' 
is 18 miles long, and from two to three miles broad, containing 
22 villages* The whole of this island is low ground, exhibit- 
ing a mixture of shells and sand, worked up by the waves ; the 
soil being hardly susceptible of any sort of culture, and 
the water generally impregnated with salt, it is chiefly planted 
with cocoanut and palmyra trees, besides a small variety 
of shrubs and vegetables, among which cotton predominates. 
The climate differs little from that of the neighbouring coast ; 
and the inhabitants enjoy good health throughout the year, 
except at the first setting in of the monsoon rains, when they 
are subject to a malignant fever and ague, which often proves 
fatal. Salt forms spontaneously on the island, but not in 
such quantities as in the Leways« In the most wild and 
uncultivated part of the sandy tracts the best chaya root 
is produced, the collecting of which forms the exclusive 
occupation of a particular class of people, called Kadeyas. 
A little to the northward of Manaar, immense quantities of 
chanks are fished; but the connoissears in that article do 
not hold them in the same estimation as those of Calpeptyn, 
on account of their not possessing that shining whiteness 
which is the characteristic of the latter. Both the channel 
and the gulf are well stocked with fish, which are caught 
in great plenty. In the Uistorie de la Compagne de Jesus, p. 11, 
tomeivn No. 276, as cited by Chambbrs in his Cyclopadiaf 
under the article '^ Mermaid,** it is stated, that in 150*0 seven 
of these monstrous animals were caught in the neighbourhood 
of Manaar by some fishermen at one draught of a net, which 
were afterwards dissected and examined by Demas Booques, 
physician to the viceroy of 6oa. 

In early times, when Manaar was the emporium of Mahome- 
dan commerce, both its exports and imports must have been 
very extensive; for we are informed by Sir Alexander 
ioBMTQHB^ ^'that in the immense wafeheosea vi^aOc^ ^<^ 


154 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [MAN 

Mahomedan merchants had established on the island, they 
received the most valuable prodactions of Ceylon from their 
subordinate agents, who resided at the different sea ports 
which were situated in the neighbourhood of those provinces 
where the various articles of commerce were produced ; and 
these formed their export trade, through the Persian gulf and 
Bussorah, with Bagdad, and all tlie countries under the 
caliphat, on the one side ; and through the Arabian gulf and 
Egypt, with all the Mahomedan powers settled along the 
coasts of the Mediterranean and of Spain, on the other;*' while 
all the manufactures and productions of those countries were 
here imported. At present its exports are chiefly confined to 
the coast of Coromandel, and consist of chanks, chaya roots, 
palmyra rafters, areka nuts, gingely, iron wood timber, and 
salt fish ; and its imports are cloth, rice, paddy, spices, and 

The island possesses a large breed of black cattle and goats ; 
from the milk of the latter the natives manufacture a coarse 
kind of cream cheese, small and round, the art of making 
which was probably communicated to them by the Dutch* 

With regard to the pristine state of Manaar we are not 
in possession of any written accounts, and are therefore 
compelled to rest on the traditions current among the natives, 
According to one of these accounts, the island was in early 
times the hereditary property of the Kadeyas, and exclusively 
occupied by them, subject to the king of Jaffna. About the 
eighth century the Mahomedan emigrants from Arabia formed 
a considerable settlement on the island ; and, from its position 
between Ceylon and the peninsula of India, made it the 
emporium of their commerce, and employed a flotilla of armed 
vessels to command the two passages in the neighbourhood. 
But at the time of the arrival of the Portuguese, in 1505, this 
establishment was already on the wane, and in a short period 
was totally annihilated. In 1543, when the Roman catholic 
religion was first introduced into the island by St. Francis 
Xa viBR, or one of his colleagues, the Kadeyas were the first to 
embrace it, which raised a great persecution against thenft.. 

KAN] ne Ceylon Gazetteer. 155 

The king of Jaffna^ who viewed its progress with a jealous eye, 
ordered 600 persons of both sexes, who had embraced Christi- 
anity, to be impaled ; and issued a proclamation, that no priest 
of any other religion than the Hindoo should approach the 
shores of the island, under a severe penalty. Xa vi br, who was 
then laboring on the opposite coast, being apprized of this 
event, immediately repaired to Cochin, and having obtained 
from the authorities there a fleet, with a sufficient number of 
troops to co-operate with him in destroying the tyrant, he 
appeared off Manaar in April 1545, but failed in his enter- 
prise. The Portuguese however took possession of the island 
in 15fK) ; and notwithstanding the attempts made by the king 
of Jaffna to retake it, they retained it till 1658, when the 
Dutch, after a short resistance, made themselves masters of it. 
Puring the government of the Portuguese it was their head 
quarters in the northern provinces, and a Captain General 
permanently resided there. They no where appear to have 
exerted themselves so much for the propagation of their faith 
as at this place ; and the success which attended their labors is 
sufficiently proved by the circumstance of there being very few 
persons of any other sect or religion at Manaar, and none 
in the adjacent province of Mantotta. It was here that the Por- 
tuguese detained the empress Donna Catharina as a state 
prisoner, previous to their raising her to the throne of her 
ancestors at Kandy, and on this account it has been rendered 
memorable in the annals of Ceylon. 

The Dutch, who succeeded the Portuguese, rendered them- 
selves at first very unpopular with the inhabitants, by using 
their influence to supplant the Romish religion ; but afterwards^ 
becoming more tolerant, they recovered their good opinion. 
However when they contemplated levying a tax on the fish 
caught by the Farawas, who form the majority of the popula- 
tion, some opposition was made, and numbers emigrated with 
all their families to the opposite coast, where they remained 
for nearly three months under the protection of the Raja of 
Ramnad, and did not return to the Island till after the Dutch 
jbiad given a solemn assurance not to establish the \acl« "^V^^ 

IM 2%6 Ceylm Gazetteer. [MAN 

island was sarrendered to the British in 1795^ and still 
remains in their possession. 

Manaar, the chief town of the foregoing island^ is the seat 
of the collector and provincial jodge, and is situated at 
the sonth eastern extremity, about 142 miles north by west 
of Colombo. It has a small square fort surrounded by a wide 
ditch, which stands so close to the channel that it may b# 
seen from the opposite shore of Ceylon. This fort contains — 
besides the officers' quarters, magazines, and barracks— a 
small protestant church, and also two reservoirs for water, one 
of which, however, is now much out of repair. About the 
distance of one furlong from the fort, through an avenue 
of Sooria trees, stands the town, which is small, but neat, 
and contains many good houses, among which that occupied 
by the collector is most conspicuous ; there are also a court 
bouse, and several chapels belonging to the Roman catholics. 
Besides the principal street occupied by the burghers, there 
are a great number of small ones in which the natives reside, 
and which extend into the country. The bazar is laig# 
and commodious, and is well supplied with merchandize. 

Manaar (Gulf of). This golf separates Ceylon from the 
southern Carnatic, and receives its name from the island 
of Manaar. which lies in it It is full of sand banks and shoals, 
which render it difficult of access lor vessels ot large burden ; 
but it is sufficiently deep for the navigation of sloops, barks, 
and dbonies, which transport goods by this passage from 
Madras, and other places subordinate to that presidency, to 
Manaar, Calpentyn, Negombo, and Colombo, instead of taking 
the outer passage round the Island, by Trincomalee, Dondra 
Head, and Galle. The sunken reef of rocks, named Adam's 
Bridge, which extends across from Talamanaar to Rauiis- 
seram presents an insurmountable obstruction to navigation, 
and vessels are obliged to unload part of their cargo at 
Manaar in their ingress and egress through the passage. 
Tl^a Gulf possesses many extensive fishmest, and aboundii. 

VAN] Hie Ceylon Gazetteer. IS7 

in pearl banks and chanks^ in^bicb constitnte one of tb^ 
principal sonrces of tbe public revenue.. (Hamilton.) 

Mangalawelltft in tbe district of Chilaw, a large plain in 
tbe neigbbourbood of tbe \?ooden bridge erected over tbe 
Qaiparawa canal near Kattakadoe. It was tbe scene of tbe 
sanguinary engagement wbicb took place between tbe Kerreae^ 
and Maokwas, in wbicb the former were completely roated^ 
and tbeir cbieftain^ Manika Talavbn^ slain, 

Mangutl Korle, a province of tbe Seven Korles^ bounded on 
tbe east by tbe Gantihe Korle ; on tbe west by Demelepattoo ; 
Qn the south by the Deduroo oya ; and on the north by tbe 
Kala oya, which separates it from Nuwera Kalawa. It 
comprehends four palattas, or divisions^ named Halamba- 
palatta, Otala-palatta, Medagandaha-palatta^ and Ramba- 
mulle-palatta ; and, according to tradition, received its name, 
which implies ^* the country of marriage/* on account of the 
seven hundred noblemen, who followed the king Wejaya 
to the Island, having celebrated their marriages in this part of 
tbe country, Paddy is the chief ol)ject of agriculture here, 
but the husbandmen entirely cepend on the periodical rains 
for irrigation. It is much infested with elephants and bears, 
and the climate is rather unhealthy. 

Manipay, a village and parish of Jaffna, in tbe province 
of Waligam, having 7596 inhabitants. Tbe village contains 
many Hindoo temples, and is one of the stations of th# 
American Missionaries in the district, 

Manmooni, a province of Batticalo, in which the island and 
town of that name are situated. A lake, or inlet from the 
sea, extends into the country to a very considerable distance, 
and affords the means of convening the produce of the pro- 
vince from one part to the other. The soil is sandy, but 
i» extensively planted with cocoanut and palmyra trees. 
The villages, which are t38 in number, are very populous, 
and the inhabitants appear to be industrious and comCottAbl^* 

108 I%e Ceylon Gazetteer. I'M A B 

Mantotta ( ttfaatottam, ''great garden/'}, a province of 
Manaar^ boanded on the east by the Wanny ; on the west by 
the gnlf of Manaar; on the north by the channel which divides 
Manaar from the main land ; and on the south by Nanaatan. 
The face of the country is almost level, and the soil exceedingly 
fertile; but at present only about 20 or 30,000 parrahs of 
land are in the course of tillage, for the want of means of 
irrigation, as the Giant's Tank, which was constructed by 
the native rulers for securing the waters of the periodical rains, 
has been long out of repair. The inhabitants are chiefly 
composed of Malabars, and live in 147 villages. 

Mantotte fMantai), a village of the above province, situated 
on the main road from Colombo to Jaffna^ 13 miles north 
of Arrippo. Here is a large store house for the reception 
of the tithes, and a rest house adjoining ; — the former was 
originally a church, and the latter the parsonage house: 
they were erected by the Portuguese. At a small distance to 
the east there are some ancient ruins, which tradition men- 
tions as being the site of buildings belonging to a company 
of goldsmiths ; or of a city, which the author of the Epitome of 
the History of Ceylon conjectures to have been founded by 
Ellala^ who invaded the island 204 years before Christ. 

' Maplegamme, a village of Gangabodepattoo, in the district 
of Galle, situated on the banks ot a river of the same name, 12 
miles north east of Baddagama. It hus a government school, 
and a great number of small neat houses, which are however 
very much scattered, 

Marawille, a village on the sea shore, about 13 miles south 
from Chilaw, on the old road to Colombo. It has a vast 
number of cocoanut trees, and its inhabitants formerly carried 
on an extensive distillation of arrack. In 1803 a party 
of Kandyans entered the village and carried off the person in 
charge of the post, but he was shortly afterwards restored* 

! M AT] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 16» 

i Marchikotta, a village, rest house, and post station^ on 

I tbe borders of the Manaar district^ IGi miles north from 
i Pomparrippo. 

Mardodde, a solitary rest house and post station, situated 
in the centre of a large forest, at the northern extremity of the 
j Putlam district^ 84 miles from Pomparrippo. 

Matele, a province of the interior, situated on the north east 
side of Kandy. Tbe name of this province signifies " a largt 
assembly;" and originated from the circumstance of the greater 
portion of captives thdt were brought over from the coast 
by Gaja Bahoo having settled there. It embraces an area 
of 227'i square miles, and contains 14!.4:C3 iuha'utants. The 
face of the country is varied with hills and vallies^ ^vbich 
are generally covered with luxuriant vegetation. 

Matelen, a village 10 miles north west of Mullativoe, on the 
road to Jaffnapatam, lies in the midst of a tope of cocoanut 
trees, the produce of which, together with the fish caught along 
the coast, forms tbe chief traffic of the inhabitants, who barter 
these articles with the Kandyans for rice and other necessaries. 

Matura, a district situated at the southern extremity of 
Ceylon, extends from east to west upwards of 40 miles^ 
and from north to south about 18 miles. It is bounded 
on the east by the Walawe ganga ; on ^the west by Talpe- 
pattoo and Gangabodepattoo ; on the south by the sea ; and 
on the north by a ridge of lofty mountains, which divide 
it from the Kandy an provinces* It comprehends, beside 
what lies within the four gravcts, 15 pattoos, and 464 
villages. A considerable proportion of the inhabitants are 
BudhistSy and their devotion to that religion is strongly 
indicated by the numerous Wihares and Dagobas erected 
throughout the country, and the multitude of priests with which 
they abound. The soilj though io general sandy and mixed 

100 The CeylM Gazetteer. [MAT 

^ith gfravel or stones^ is favorable to af^ricDltnre, and the low 
l9Ln6» prpdoce all sorts of paddy in great abundance^ while 
the high lands are covered with cocoantit and other fruit 
trees. The forests in this district teem with elephants ; and in 
one of the hunts which took place in 171)7 (on account of go- 
vernment), na of these monstrous animals were caught The 
inhabitants carry on the manufacture of cordage very exten- 
sively ; and the district has been long noted for the enamelled 
arekanut-cutters^ which are fabricated by the smiths there. 
The Wesleyan Missionaries have an establishment in the 
district, and 13 schools for the education of native children. 

Matura, the chief town of the above district, stands at a 
diort distance from the se^, on the banks of the Neel ganga, 
over which there is a wooden bridge. The name is a modifi- 
cation of the Singhalese term Makatotta, implying '* the great 
ferry/' employed in reference to the river being wide and 
rapid in the neighbourhood, it has a small fort, and the 
town consists principally of one street, extending along the 
banks of the river towards the sea, and is adorned with manj 
handsome houses> chiefly belonging to Dutch families. It was 
formerly the seat of the collector of the district, and then wore 
a livdy appearance, but since this was removed to Tangalle, 
it has gradually declined. The Maha Modliar Illangaroon 
resides here, and owns several extensive estates in the district. 
There is also a protcstant church, which is under the superin- 
tendence of an elder and deacons ; and according to a Minnte 
of government, dated the i9th of August I819« no interment is 
allowed in the body of the structure under the sum of 72. lOs.^ 
and all such sums arc to be exclusively devoted to the repairs. 

Maturatta (Maltoorank) a military post in the Kandyan 
Provinces, and the seat of the agent of government for the 
district of Hewahette south of the Maha oya, and Walapanne, 
is situated on a hill about 2,7(H^ feet above the level of the sea. 
The scenery around is extremely grand and imposing, but noi 
extea^if^, except to the north, ^bich overlooks Deitalavai 

UEDJ ne CkyUm Gazetteer. 161 

and the road into Kandy. It lies north east of Nnwera Ellia, 
the distance to which| in a direct line, is not more than five ot 
six miles; but as the road winds round the mountains, the dis- 
tance is extended to upwards of fifteen miles. The climate, 
though not so cold as at Nuwera Ellia, is considered more 
favorable to European constitutions, and the thermometer 
seldom ranges afoove 70'« It possesses a soil far superior 
to any in the Island, and produces paddy, coffee, potatoes, 
arrow-root, tobacco, and onions, besides a variety of European 
shrubs, flowers, and vegetables, which are cultivated in a 
garden belonging to the Commandant of the place. The 
streams in their descent from the mountains irrigate the fields ; 
and the vallies afford pasture for cattle, which thrive ex- 
ceedingly well. About two miles from the post there is a 
cave on the side of a hill, in which a considerable quantity of 
natural carbonate of magnesia has been found. The dimen-» 
sions of this cave are comparatively small ; in the highest part 
the roof may be reached with the hand, and where widest 
it does not exceed twenty four feet. The ground, though 
in general level, is rendered rugged and uneven from masses of 
rock, and from holes dug in it during the rebellion for the 
purpose of secreting grain. The distance from the mouth 
of the cave to the extreme end may be about 150 feet, and 
a man cannot walk erect except in one or two places. (Davy.) 

Mavfttapuram, a place of Hindoo worship in the parish 
of Tillipally, situated about 14 miles north of Jaffnapatam. 
A large temple near is sacred to Sranda, and is said to 
have been originally founded by a princess from the Coroman- 
del coast, who, having been born with a horse face, was 
here miraculously delivered of it:— hence the place received 
the name of " Mavittapnram," or ** the city where the horse 
face was got rid of." 

Medagamwelle, a village io Welasse^ 6 miles north east 
of Kattabowe, occupied as a military post by the British troops 
the period of the rebellion. 


16S 7%e (kylm "Outem^. [M E E 

WedamaHa Nuwtra, )& villag^e of l><k)inbera, ieifticienlly bne 
of tbe royal residences of the Singhalese lin$rs/is sittiated 
at the base of a hill 17 miles south east of Kandy. It 
is remarkable in the annals of Ceylon, as tbe place inhere 
the late kin^ SRf:B Wikram k Raja Singha was captured by 
a party of bis own subjects, and delivered over to tbe British 
f^overnmcnt. It consists of ixit one single street, composed of 
about twenty bouses, which arc tolerably good ; and in front of 
each is a little enclosed spot planted with cocoannt trees. It 
has a Wihare ; and tbe ruins of a building erected by the 
late king, and the bouse in which be concealed himself, ar* 
still ei^tant. (Davy. J 

MedapdlattOf a province of Chilaw, bounded on the north 
by Yagampattoo ; on the south by Otara-palatta ; on tbe east 
by the Kandyan Provinces ; and on tbe west by the sea. It is 
about 8 miles in length, and from 3 to 4 miles in breadth ; 
contains 20 villages, and about iOOO inhabitants. Paddy 
IS cultivated with great success, and is the {Hincipal source 
of revenue in this part of tbe province. 

MedapattoOf one of the divisions of Hewagam Korle, con- 
taining 30 villages. 

Medapattoo, one of the divisions of Hina Korle, situated 
idmost in the centre of that province. 

Mee Oya, a river, called also Welukay Aar in its progress 
through the maritime provinces. It has its source in tbe 
mountains of Matele, and is a very inconsiderable stream till 
it arrives at Madagalle ; where being joined with tbe waters 
of a broken tatik» and receiving many tributary streams, it 
assumes some degree of magnitude; and after a meandering 
course through the Seven Korles, descends into the district of 
Putlam, and empties itself into tbe gulf of Calpentyn, bctw^^^n 
Ambalam and Manative^ by different branches!^ none of which 
are however navigable. 

M I N] The Ceyhm Gazetteer* 163 

Stidiguma, a village to the west of Belligam, in the district 
of Galle^ originally called '' Nidigama/' or ''the sleeping 
village/' in consequence of the inhabitants having neglected to 
light up the road> and pay the accustomed honors to Kum4ARA. 
Daas^ when be passed through the village at hight. (Wee^ 
kyan Missionary Reports.) 

Mihintalku, a rocky mountain of considerable size, situated 
On the east, about 8 miles from the centre of Anooraadhapoora, 
and supposed to have been either included within, or to have 
formed part of the walls of that city. It is held in great vene- 
ration by the Singhalese, on account of the visits which were 
made to it by the Budha who preceded the last ; and there 
are still extant the ruins of the Dagoba raised on its summit by 
the king Maha Dailiya. It is sometimes called '' SolasmaS' 
taana,** and is ascended by a flight of 1800 steps. (Ceylojt 
Almanac, 1833 J 

Minnery (MennairioL)^ a village in the province of Tamaoh 
kadewa, situated on the road to Kandy, 56 miles south west of 
Trincomalee. At this place there is a remarkably large tank 15 
or 20 miles in circumference, which has been formed by an arti- 
ficial embankment a quarter of a mile long, and about sixty feet 
wide at its top. 1 1 has two sluices through which the country 
about Soungervilla is supplied with water, conducted by 
a canal. This tank is said to have been constructed by 
the king Maha Sen ; and though upwards of fifteen centuries 
have elapsed it is still in good repair, and the inhabitants 
are entirely dependent on it, for the cultivation of their fields* 
It is bounded by extensive plains beyond which the surround- 
ing woods rise, rendering the scenery very beautiful. (Ceyfon 
Almanac^ 1833.) 

Mittuangodde, a village situated on the top of a bill, about 
one mile from the fort of Oalle^ having a few bouses, with 
a school belonging to the Wesleyan Missionaries. 

1M inse Ceylon CfUzetiut. t^dK 

Mirisgoona Oya, a small river which intersects the road 
jbom Kumagalle to Trincomalee, 2 xnilcs from DambooUa. 
A rest house is now building in the neighboarhood^ 1 mile 
beyond the janction of the road from Kandy. {^Ceylof^ 
Almanac, 1883.^ 

Mogamalle, a viHage and parish of Jaffna^ in the province 
of Pachellepalle, south east of Eludumatuwal. The soil though 
iandy is productive, and yields a plentiful supply of paddy. 
It has a market on Saturdays^ and the inhabitants amount 
to 1066. 

Moharry, the principal village in the pfovinbe of Kumara^ 
wannipattoo, lies close to a small river, almost embowered 
with high jungle. Its inhabitants are Singhalese, and having 
large plots of paddy land find sufficient employment in theif 

MoneiserampattoOf a province situated on the south east 
side of Cbilaw, 18 miles long, by 8 miles broad. It compre- 
hends €5 villages and 1700 inhabitants, and produces a large 
quantity of paddy. 

Montsserdm ( Mumyaiswara), a village in the above pro* 
Yince, situated about one mile east of Chilaw, from which it 
ii$ 8epara.ted by a large plain often laid out in paddy fields* It 
is a place of great antiquity, and is chiefiy remarkable for an 
old temple built of sand stones and chunam, and roofed 
ovei^ with the same material in the form of an arch, having 
at the west eiid a small dome, surmounted with a copper 
vase originally gilt. On the walls of this temple there are 
some inscriptions in the Grantha character, but so much 
Worn out by time that they are scarcely legible. The templo 
Is surrounded by a mud wall, within which is a well fur^ 
Utshing water for ablution. Siva is worshipped here, under 
the title of "MUNiVAisWARA," or "IsWaHa the Peni- 
tent,'* but the shrine is particularly sacred to his consort 
••ParvatI," whose figure is said to have l^een originally 

MOttl 3%e CeyloH Oatettur. IttI 

discovered in a pool of water in the neighbonrhood* Besides 
these two, there are figures of nearly all the deities of 
Hindoo mythology ; amongst which, the one with six heads 
and twelve hands, representing ^'Skanda'' in his martial 
character, was presented to the temple by an ancient king of 
the coast of Malabar. A grand festival is held at this tempio 
daring the month of Augiist for eighteen days saccessively, 
and is attended by Malabars and Singhalese^ notwithstanding; 
their adherence to different creeds. 

Monewattebagepatloo, a division of Baygam Korle in the 
district of Caltora^ having 83 villages and 7226 inhabitants. 

Moodekkooda (The Alligator*s bay), a considerable village 
in the province of Manmoone, situated on a point of land 
which projects into the lake south west of Batticalo. It 
contains upwards of 2U0 inhabitants, of whom the greater pro- 
portion are Mookwas, who exclusively attend to agricul-* 
tare ; the rest derive their support from fishings for which 
the place is very advantageously situated, 

Moongil Aar(The Bamboo river), a small river which rises 
ih the bill called *' Tuttinuvvera Kande," south east of Carra* 
tivoe, and after a tortuous course of nearly 20 miles discharges 
itself into the gulf of Calpentyn, near Periakooda. It is not 
navigable, and when the periodical rains fail becomes com- 
pletely dried up ; but it has been noticed on account of the 
numerous ruins of stone buildings which are found on its 
banks near the source. 

Morotto, a village on the road to Caltura, about 7 miles 
•otith of Colombo* It is chiefly inhabited by fishermen, among 
Whom there are many good turners and cabinet makers. Here 
was formerly an extensive distillation of arrack, but which has 
of late years been neglected. There are several plantations 
of cinnamon, orange trees, and pine apples. The inhabitants 
«arry on a considerable trade in copperahs, cordage, and areka 
QQts^ with the coast of CoromandeL A large QtoU^\.%.\i\.OQc»!^ 

169 !&• Ccy/ott GaxettHT. [M U Jb 

erected by Sir Robert Brown rigg, and a neat sckool house 
for girls by his amiable iady^ stand near the road aide^ as 
a lasting monamcnt of their noble munificence in the cause of 

Morruwa Korle, a province of Matura^ situated to the 
south of Dondra Head, and divided into two parts^ — Odngaha, 
and Tattigaha; the former including 9 and the latter 19 

Mostly, a province of Manaar, bounded on the east by 
ffae Wanny ; on the west by the gulf of Manaar ; on the north 
by the Arrippo river ; and on the south by the Moregam river. 
It contains K5 villages, of which the greater part are inhabited 
by Moors, who have come over from the opposite coa^tt and 
settled here. The Pearl fishery, for which the Island of Ceylon 
bas been long celebrated, takes place on the coast of this pro* 
vince. It is a level country, and as the soil is better adapted 
for the culture of paddy than any thing else, the inhabitants 
prepare their lands chiefly for this grain ; and plant cocoanut 
trees within their compounds only. The forests abound with 
elephants, and a particular class of Moormen are employed 
to catch them, whenever there is any demand for that useful 

Mottettogamme, a village on the road from Colombo to 
BaduIIa, by Avisahavele and Ratnapoora, 3 miles from 
Alutnuwera. It is situated in a country almost covered with 
immense hills and steep heights, and exhibiting on the whole 
an extremely grand scenery. 

MuUativoe, a small town in the province of North Karre-. 
kattemoole, of which it is the capital. It is distant 58| miles 
south east of Jaffna, and stands in north latitude O""!?', and east 
longitude SI"*?'. It was formerly the seat of the Collector of the 
district, but now a sitting magistrate only resides there. The sea 
li^s about a quarter of a mile from the place ; and most of the 
houses^ which overlook it^ are built of atone, and whitewashed* 

If UK] tR« iJ^hn Oazet^Hnr. tOT 

The ifihabitasts are chiefly emfdoyed in fidhi&g. It abounds 
With catd^ and the neighbouf ing woods are the haant of dear 
aad wild boars. 

This town owes much of its improvement to the exertions 
of Captain Nagel, a gallant and active officer, who, aften 
the reduction of the Wanny was appointed the Landrost. Oa 
the 33th of Angast 1803 the Kandyans in great force attacked 
the place, which being untenable Captain Driberg withdrew 
the few soldiers who were stationed there in good order, 
to boats, vrkAch had been sent to secnre his retreat, and 
carried them in safety to Jaffna. The place was soon after« 
wards recovered by a detachment sent from Tr incomalee onder 
the command of Captain Madge, of H. M. I9th regiment. 

MulktUHiUe, a considerable village in the province of tha 
Wanny, which has a tolerably large population, viitb exten-* 
sive groves of cocoannt, palmyra, and jack trees, interspersed 
with excellent paddy fields, in good cultivation. It lies 
east of MuUativoe, and has a Pouamcundoo and provincial 

MuUipattoo, a parish of Jaffna, in the province of Pacliello* 
palle, situated near the source of the river called Passo Seco, 
containing 2081 inhabitants. It is not susceptible of cuhiva- 
tion, as the soil consists almost entirely of sand. It is mach 
infested with elephants. The village stands close to the 
Kandyan territories, and on that account the church which 
stood there was furnished with port-holes. (BaldausJ 

Murendenwelly, a village and post station in the province of 
Pomparippoo, 6 miles north of Carrativoe. The country 
around is extremely wild, and presents nothing but high 
hills and forests, in which elephants, bears, and tigers, find 
an undisturbed shelter. There is a water communication from 
hence with Calpentyn, by a branch of the Pomparippo tiver* 
wUeh passes in its way to the gulf. 

106 T%9 Ctf/ion Gazetteer. [M UT 

Mulwal CMuhatw&ramX an island in the gulf of Manaar^ 
separated from Calpentyn by a narrow strait. It i# about 10 
miles long, and from 2 to 3 miles broad, and contains 156 
inhabitants, scattered over the whole island. They employ 
themselves in the cultivation of cocoanut trees, catching fish, 
platting cadjans, and making chunam by burning shells, 
which are found in great abundance along the coast. Almost 
all the lands in the island were formerly public property, and 
were completely overrun with wood ; but, in 1792, Mr. Van- 
DER Graff, the Dutch chief, had them put up for sale, when 
some of the principal landlords of Calpentyn purchased them 
in lots, and notwithstanding the exceedingly sandy soil, they 
have since found means to raise a vast number of cocoanut 
trees, which now supply the markets of Calpentyn with 
great quantities of copperahs for exportation. There is here a 
small Roman catholic chapel, which attracts a large concourse 
of people from Calpentyn on the anniversary feast of St 
Anthony of Padua, whose name it bears. The Dutch 
built a tower on the west side of the island, for observing ths 
approach of vessels, but it is now wholly gone to ruin ; 
and the present government has only a watch house in which a 
supervisor of customs resides to prevent smuggling. Close to 
this building is the bay called the Dutch Bay, where vessels 
bound to Colombo occasionally anchor for shelter; and on the 
margin of which, the cottoos and boutiques were built during 
the Pearl fishery off Karadive in 1882. 


Nadenef a small village in the province of Porativoe, formerly 
the residence of the Wannias, and is now inhabited by some 
of their descendants. It is a place of rendezvous for tho 
people employed in catching wild bufTuloes, of which there 
are great numbers in the adjacent forest. There is a small 
temple sacred to Nayaiiar, (a deity peculiar to this part 

NAM] !%€ Ceylon Gazetteer. 169 

of the country) and the baflfalo catchers annually make a 
great oflfaiing at this shrine, 

Nadokadoo, a province of Batticalo, situated on the south 
side, adjoining to Al&karapattoo; and though it contains 34 
villages, half of that number only is inhabited. It has many 
extensive plains, and is traversed by several nullahs, which 
are very difficult to cross in the rainy season. 

Nainativoe (Haarlem)^ a small island oa the south west 
of Jaffnapatam, situated in north latitude 9^41' and east 
longitude 79* S4>. It is about four miles in circumference, and 
is chiefly inhabited by a class of Vellalas, who now pass 
for Brahmins, as their progenitors assumed the sacerdotal 
habit of that race, for the purpose of being exempt from 
the servitude tax levied by the Dutch on all others. In the 
time of Bald^eos, the whole of these pretended Brahmins 
bad become Christians, and had a small church; but there 
is not a vestige of it now remaining. The island is partially 
cultivated, but contains only 418 inhabitants. Here is a small 
Hindoo temple, sacred to Nag a Tambiran, or the god of 
serpents^ in which is a number of cobra capellas, that are 
daily fed by the Pandarams. 

Ndkendella, a village and rest house, situated on the road 
to Badulla, by Avisahavile and Ratnapoora^ about 40 miles 
from Colombo. 

Nalande, a village, once a military post of some importance 
in the province of Idatele, is situated on a river which bears 
its name. It is distant 10 miles from Nayacoombura, the road 
lying over a most beautiful country of hills and valleys, with 
well cultivated paddy fields around* 

Nallooruwa, a fishing village on the road to Colombo, north 
of Caltura. It has several stills for making arrack, and carries 
on the manufacture of coir rope extensively. 

Namunukulakande, a lofty and conspicuous mountain^ which 
rises south east above the valley of BaduUa^ in height about 


170 21l€ Ceylon Gazetteer. [^ AMT 

6740 feet. It is covered with jangle, and moch infested with 
leeches, rendering the ascent very irksome. (Davy. J 

Nanaatan, a province of M anaar, situated between Mantotte 
and Mosely. It is aboat 14 miles long, and fVom 5 to 9 miles 
broad, and contains 188 villages. It produces a great quantity 
of paddy, and the peasantry in this part of the country appeal 
to be more inclined to agriculture than their neighbours, 

Nanaatan, the chief village of the preceding province, to 
which it gives its name, is situated about 10 miles south east 
of Manaar. The t'ortuguese built a church here, which 
several years ago fell to decay, and the present one has been 
erected on its site. Iiiimense quantities of betel are grown 
here, and it may be said almost to supply the market of 
Manaar with this article. 

Narakally, a considerable village pleasantly situated on the 
banks of the gulf of Calpentyn, adjoining to Mampore. The 
houses are widely scattered among cocoaaut trees on the high 
ground near the edge of the gulf, and are backed by rich 
fields of paddy. The inhabitants are composed of Protestants 
and Roman catholics, but the latter alone have a chapel. 

Ndrangalakande, a mountain of considerable size in the 
province of Weyaloowa, about 8 miles from Hornatotte. At 
the base of this mountain is a remarkably large cavern or 
dell, which furnished shelter to the rebels in 1817. (Ceylon 

Nawatadoo (from Nawa nine, and Kadoo, a sword^, a 
village of Akkarapattoo, situated directly opposite to Putlam^ 
about 15 miles south west of Calpentyn. It is remarkable for 
the pompous visits which the kings of Kandy were formerly 
accustomed to make to it, as soon as they were crowned, to 
assume the sword of state after bathing in the sea in the 
neighbourhood. It contains about 200 inhabitants, the majority 
c^f whom are the descendants of the ancient MooRVirA cfalef- 
fains^) aad there is a smaU church for the «se of tbo Bonaa 

IT E 43] 7X# Ceyion Oaz$tteer. 171 

eatholicfl* There are sereral cocoanut and arekanat plan- 
tatioDfl, which are generally interspersed with small patches of 
paddy fields. The water at this place is the best in the 
districtp and the inhabitants obtain it by sinking wells to a 
little depth. 

Navakeerjf, a place about 9 miles north east of Jaffnapatam^ 
V^hicb has a very extraordinary well, 24 fathoms deep and 165 
feet in circumference. Of the S4 fathoms, 14 are quite fresh, 
but at 16 fathoms the water is salt, with a nauseous sulphury 
smell. It is conjectured to have some subterraneous commu- 
fiication with the sea at Kecrimale, and the rise and faU 
of the tide in the well is about 6 inches in 24 hours. ( Colombo 

Navakuly, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province of 
Tenmarachy, adjoining to Chawagacherry. It contains 3490 
Inhabitants, and is exceeded by few other parishes in the 
culture of paddy. 

Notypatiimooni, a large and populous village, 17 miles 
south east of Batticalo, situated on the banks of the lake 
. which runs up from the above town. It has a large store- 
house for paddy* 

Negombo, a town on the sea coast of the province of Alut- 
koor Korle, situated in T IS* north latitude and in 7L* 49> east 
longitude, about 23 miles north east of Colombo. The Singha* 
lese derive the name from Meegamuwe, *' the village of honey,** 
and say that it originated from the story of a swarm of bees 
settling in a boat, which had been hauled ashore there. But 
the Malabars, on the other hand, contend that it comes from 
Nihumbala, and that from Nihumba, the younger son of 
KuMBAKARNA, ouc of the brothers of R\wana. In the 
Uttara Khanta of the Mamayana, Valnika relates, that 
on the eleventh day of the siege of the citadel of Kawana 
by the troops of Rama, Indrajit, the crown prince, finding 
Umsdlf unable any longer to hold out against the besiegers. 

172 T%e Ceylon Gazetteer. [NEL 

withdrew from the place, and retired with a part of his 
army to Nihumbala, to make a Ydga or offering to invoke the 
assistance of the gods, and to render himself invulnerable. 

The fort of Negombo is an irregular pentagon of mud, with a 
stone gateway ; and the buildings in the interior have lately 
been completely repaired. The Pettah contains a great number 
of neatly built houses — separated from each other by rows 
of trees and lofty hedges— chiefly occupied by families of 
Portusfuese and Dutch extraction. The boutiques are ranged 
along both sides of the street, and a large wooden bridge 
is erected over the canal which passes almost through the 
centre of the Pettah ; and by means of which, an inland navi- 
gation is carried on to Colombo. The custom-house stands 
close to a lake, and the rest house, formerly the residence 
of the commandant, is also on its banks ; the situation of the 
latter is rendered cool and delightful from the shade of several 
large teak trees, which are planted before it. It has two 
handsome churches belonging to the Roman catholics, and 
a neat chapel erected by the Wesleyan Missionaries in the 
year 1820. Negombo was fortified by the Portuguese at the 
time they built the fort of Colombo a second time. In 
1610 they were dispossessed of it by the Dutch, and recovered 
it soon afterwards, but lost it finally in 1644. His Excel- 
lency Sir Francis Caron, who commanded the Dutch troops 
at the reduction of the place, after strengthening the fortifica- 
tions, left a garrison of 500 men to preserve order and 
tranquillity. A short time after the Dutch had established 
themselves at Negombo, Mr. Vanderstel, who was then 
at their head, having imprudently ordered some elephants to 
be carried off from the royal stall, the king was so exasperated 
that he gave orders for his apprehension, and having cut 
ofl* his head, sent it in a silken bag for the inspection of his 
countrymen. The English obtained possession of the place in 
1796, and have retained it ever since. 

Ndlore, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province of^ 
Waligam, supposed to have been the seat of the Chakrawarii$ 

N XJ W] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 173 

or Tamul sovereigns, who anciently governed the country. 
Its population is estimated at 5180^ and consists of agricultu- 
rists, mechanics, traders, and a good number of dyers and 
painters of cotton cloth. This village is the principal station 
of the Church Missionaries in Jaffna, who have a very pretty 
church, a school house, and printing press, from which a great 
number of tracts in the Tamul language, has been from time 
to time issued, on account of the Jaffna Auxiliary Religious 
Tract Society. In the neighbourhood there is a large Hindoo 
temple, sacred to Skanda, or, as he is here called, Kan da 
Swamy; — it is said to have been originally founded by the 
jQrst Chakrawarti, or Tamul king, some centuries ago. It is 
in great repute among the natives, and the annual festival is 
attended by a vast concourse of people from distant parts, 
(Rev. M. Winslow.) 

Nilavelly, a village and r^'st house on the road from Jaffna 
to Trincomalee, about 57 miles south east from Mullativoe. 
It produces, besides palmyra and cocoanuts, large quantities 
of tobacco and salt, which latter is manufactured in the 
marshes in the vicinity. North from this place, in a westerly 
direction, stands a column of granite (rising out of the summit 
of a circular mount) which bears a striking resemblance to 
a human figure, and which tradition affirms to be a lady 
of quality, who became petrified for offending the deity of the 
place by making his sacred grove in the neighbourhood the 
scene of her lasciviousness. ( Cordiner^) 

Nuwera Ellia, a military post lately taken up, is in a south 
east direction, 50 miles from Kandy, the road lying through 
a wild and mountainous country, always picturesque,— -often 
magnificent. This place was first visited by Europeans in 
September 1827, and was fixed on by Sir E. Barnbs, as 
offering peculiar advantages for a convalescent station, in 
January 1828. He immediately commenced building a house, 
and since that period many habitations have been erected 
by private individuals ; and others, both public and private, are 

174 T%e eegkm GuxeUur. £NUW 

now in ptogrMMi (the discorery of lime-stone in tiie neigh- 
bomiiood greatly facilitating the object^; and there cannot- 
be a doubt, bat that the place will soon increase in import- 
ance as well as extent The smoking chimnies and white* 
washed walls of the hooses give it all the appearance of an 
En^ish hamlet. It is upwards of 6000 feet above the level of 
the sea,-^the extent of the plain on which it is sitoated may be 
about 4 miles in length, and one and a half mile in breadth. 
This plain is divided into two parts by a thidL strip of jangle, 
and is in a great measure sarroanded by steep rocky moan- 
tains of irregular height, which are covered with wood from 
the verge of the plain to their very tops. One of these 
mountains rises upwards of 2000 feet above the level of 
the river which meanders through the entire extent of the 
plain. '' The temperature of the air never approaches to what 
is called Tropical heat, and though the cold is sometimes 
MO great as to produce ice, yet that piercing wind which 
is so frequently complained of in England is never felt.'' The 
mean daily variation of the temperature is as high as 1 12*, and 
the annual range from 35|o to SOh. ''There are two seasons, 
*-the rainy and the dry; the former prevailing daring the period 
of the north east monsoon (from December to May), and the 
latter daring that of the south west (from June to November). 
The soil consists of a deep black mould, resting on a stratum of 
yellow clay and gravel* All descriptions of English vegetables, 
fruits, and flowers, are cultivated with success, and promise to 
become abundant. There are numerous springs and wells ; 
and the water is so pure, as to form a transparent solution of 
nitrate of silver ;— there are also chalybeate springs. A good 
deal of game is found in the neighbouring jungles; and we 
learn that some otters have been discovered to exist in the 
proximity of the river before noticed. 

From the establishment of a Mail coach between Colombo 
and Kandy-— by which easy conveyance persons may advance 
72 miles on their journey with little or no fatigue - we may 
expect it to become the resort of invalids, even from the coast. 
The European soldiers resident at Nuwera EUia appear ruddy 

N U W] The Ceykm Oaxetteei^4 175 

and healthy, and possess the same strength and spirifis ad 
in their native land; and may be said also to possess that 
tobnstncss of frame, common among the inhabitants of an 
English agricnHnral district. 

Of this beaatifnl spot, reclaimed from the wilderness, mnch 
more might be said; but as time will doubtless develops 
numerous advantages yet undiscovered, we have eonfined 
dnrselves to such information as has already appeared from 
able pens, regarding the present advantages it offers to 
Europeans, both in salubrity and comfort. Even this, brief 
as it is, may prove not uninteresting, when this infant atatiori 
at some future period shall have become conspicuous among 
the posts on the Island. 

There is a bazar which is improving daily; tnd ih6 
establishment of a native rest house for coolies proves highly 
beneficial. (Colombo Journal.} 

Nuwera Katawa, one of the most extensive districts ill 
die interior, situated to the northward of Kandy, is bounded 
on the east by Matele ; on the west and south by the Seveil 
Korles ; and on the north by the Wanny. It is divided intd 
14 Pattoos, or counties ; namely, Herellewe, Matambea^i 
hidrowa, Halagamuwe, Huruly, Mahapotane, Maminyliy 
Parahawa, Haballe, Nuagamdaha, Killigam, Epawela, Olla-' 
galla, and Nuweragam ; of which the first seven, on the nortb^ 
are under the agent of goveitiment for the Seven Koiies, and 
the last seven, on the east, are under the agent of government 
for Matele. The whole of Nuwera Kalawa may be character-* 
ized as a dead flat covered with thick jungles ; and thongk 
it has some hills on the east yet none of them rise td 
any great height. It has no rivers ; but the Kalaoya(froni 
which its name is probably derived) enters on the east side^ 
and flowing through the southern parts, and passing Pom* 
parippo, falls into the gulf of Calpentyn. 

The climate of Nuwera Kalawa is generally considered 
healthy ; but in consequence of the high lands being overgrown 
with thick jungles, and exposed to putrid effluvia arising from 

176 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [NUW 

stag^nant wafers, the inhabitants are sabject to fever and agae 
at certain periods of the year, especially during the rainy 
season. The soil in most parts is remarkably fertile, and 
yields two harvests in the year, —one of which is reaped in 
February, the other in July. Paddy is the staple production, 
but other sorts of grain -such as corakan, gingely, mungo, 
and minery — together with mustard, chillies, and cotton, are 
extensively cultivated. Its manufactures are chiefly confined 
to a coarse kind of cotton stuffs. 

It carries on a considerable trade with the maritime districts, 
and also with some of the inland provinces ; exporting paddy, 
fine grain, chillies, and cotton ; and importing salt, salt fish, 
cloth, areka nuts, tobacco, iron, copper, steel, lead, pepper, 
garlic, onions, and turmeric. 

The inhabitants are composed of Singhalese and Malabars, 
who are very industrious, and exhibit a remarkable simpli- 
city in their manners and customs. If we are to form aa 
estimate from the number and dimensions of the tanks which 
are found in several parts of this district, and the ruins of 
its once splendid capital A nooradhapoora, it must have 
formerly contained a numerous population. The present de- 
cline is chiefly to be attributed to the frequent invasions 
of Malabars, from the opposite coast, and to the removal 
of the seat of government from the district to the south- 

The chieftain of this district bears the title of Satpattoo 
Maha Wanni Unnahey; and, as he is considered to be descend- 
ed from the individual who brought over the Sri Maha Bodi tree 
from Dambadiva, is held in great respect by the Singhalese, 
and is the warden of the temple at Anooradhapoora. The 
present chieftain having been implicated in the rebellion 
of 1»I7-18 was removed from the office, and confined for 
a long time at Galle, and has been only reinstated lately. 

0H;UJ Tke Ceylon Gazetteer. 177 


Odelkwelle, a village in the province of Yagampattoo, situa- 
ted on the banks of the Kaddoopitti oya, 12 miles south of 
Ghilaw. It has a Wihare, and a tolerably large population. 

Odepenkarre, a village on the verge of the Anewulundan- 
pattoo, separated from Andipan6 by a small channel. It is 
inhabited by fishermen^ and has a few small boutiques. The 
spray of the sea, with the aridity of the soil, will not allow trees 
or shrubs to thrive in the place; and therefore nothing but the 
marshes which produce salt, and the fish caught in the neigh- 
bourhood, keep the inhabitants attached to this dreary spot. 

OdugahapattoOy one of the minor divisions of the province of 
Hina Korle, which contains 65 villages, and 5048 inhabitants. 

OdugahapattoOy one of the minor divisions of the province of 
Hewagam Korle, which contains 22 villages, and 2314 inhabi- 

Odugahapattoo, one of the minor divisions of the province of 
Salpitty Korle, which contains 17 villages, and 1263 inhabi- 

Odugahapattoo, one of the minor divisions of the province of 
Hapitigam Korle, which contains 60 villages, and 4575 in- 

OdugdhapattoOy one of the minor divisions of the province 
of Raygam Korle, in the district of Caltura, having 28 villages, 
and 1536 inhabitants. 

Odugahapattoo, a small division in the province of Morruwa 
Korle, having 9 villages, and 1417 inhabitants. 

Ollomadoe, a village on the road from Trincomalee to Wer- 
teltivoe, about 16 miles west of Paneugamma. 

Ohundamalli, a large rock on the road from Hambantotte to 
Batticalo, Hi miles from Kumukan. Tt has several tanks of 
firesh wat«r on it, and is regarded by theMalabars, who composo 

2 a 

178 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [OXJL 

the population of the country, as somewhat sacred^ from its 
being connected with certain traditions of Siva having once 
made a descent on it with his consort. 

Oodeville, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province of 
Waligam, and one of the stations of the American Missionaries, 

Ooma Oya, a river which branches off from the Mahawelli- 
gauga, and intersects the road from Kandy to BaduUa, 5 miles 
from the Kurundoo oya. It often rises to a considerable 
degree ; and in January 1818 was so high, that Captain Blan- 
KENBURGH was obligccfto pass his men over upon a hanging 
foot bridge, leaving behind all the heavy baggage. (Ceylon 

Oonadiya Parwatte (the hot water mountain)^ a bluff 
mountain, on the road from Batnapoora to Adam's Peak, so 
called from a tradition that formerly a boiling spring existed 
on its summit. (Colombo Journal.) 

Oorelya, a village in the province of Yagampattoo, 10 miles 
east from Chilaw. It contains a small population, and is only 
remarkable for a Wihare* 

Oori Aar, a small inlet of the gulf of Calpentyn, which is 
crossed by travellers about 7 miles south west of Calpentyn. 
This inlet is of great service in supplying the salt works at 
Nachikally with water, and besides abounds with excellent fish. 

Ootarapalatta, a province of Chil9.w, at its southern extre- 
mity, containing 2512 inhabitants. 

Oottooankande^ a village and rest house on the road from 
Colombo to Kandy, by Kaddooganava, 10 miles from Balla- 
pane, and 16 miles from Kandy. It is also one of the Mail 
coach stations. 

Ouladangawa, a village on the road from Kurnagalle 
to Trincomalee, 6 miles from Innamallowa, About 4 miles 
from this village is the ancient fortress of Seegiri, and there is 
a good path to it. 

PAL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 179 


Padenia, a village of Pahaladolospattoo, in the Seven Korles, 
situated on the road from Putlam to Kurnagalle, 43 miles 
east of the former place. It has a Wihare, which was for some 
time occupied as a military post^ and then restored to the 
priests in consequence of the insalubrity of the place. 

Palekuda, a small village in the province of Akkarapattoo, 
situated about 8 miles to the south of Calpentyn. This place 
is celebrated for a Roman catholic chapel dedicated to St. Ann, 
which attracts a prodigious number of pilgrims from every 
part of the Island, and even from the coast of Coromandel. 
The anniversary of the Saint's day falls on the 26th of July ; 
but here it is commemorated on the Sunday following. During 
this occasion a great number of boutiques are set up in 
the vicinity, and the place wears almost the appearance of 
a fair. On ordinary days a swarm of paupers occupy the 
spot, and live on the alms distributed to them by casual 

Palgamaniy a village of Porativoe, situated in a north- 
westerly direction from Batticaio, and is remarkable for a 
temple, sacred to the five Pandawa heroes. During the prin- 
cipal annual festival, which continues for ten days, a large 
concourse of people collect at the village, and those who have 
bound themselves by vow, traik barefoot over a bed of burning 

Pallawarajeniattoe, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the 
province of Pachallepalli, situated towards its southern extre- 
mity. It is a desert tract, and has no more than 2(10 inhabi- 
tants. The village however is tolerably good, and has a very 
considerable tank, affording means of cultivating an exten- 
sive plot of paddy fields. Here is a rest liouse for travellers, 
which stands about a mile and a half from the sea. 

Pallegammey a village in the Lagelle Korle, about 1'6 mile* 
north west from Hanwelle, and 24 miles west of Bintenn^. 

180 Th€ Ceylon Gazetteer. [PAN 

Here Captain Glbnholmb was statioDcd for some time, 
to Intercept the flight of the rebel chief Madugallb^ the 
direction of whose retreat having been reported to be towards 
that part of the country. (Ceylon Gazette.) 

Pallekandel, a village sitaated on the north east side of 
PomparippOy about one mile from the rest house, from which it 
is however concealed by a strip of thick jungle, much infested 
by elephants. It has a considerable extent of paddy land, 
which is cultiTated by means of an artificial tank of some size. 
The forests in the neighbourhood swarm with game, and also 
furnish many varieties of useful timber. 

Pallepattoo, a division of Hewagam Korle, which contains 
87 villages, and 5616 inhabitants. 

PalUpattoo, a division of Salpitty Korle, extending mostly 
along the sea coast, having 90 villages, and 20,7;i9 inhabitants. 

Pallepattoo, a division of Morruwa Korle, which contains 19 
villages, and 3881 inhabitants. 

Palliwasellorrey a village of Akkarapattoo, situated on 
the Rulfof Calpentyn, 6 miles south west from Calpentyn. It 
has about 1000 inhabitants, and carries on a small manufacture 
of cloth. There are great numbers of black cattle, and also 
asses, but the latter are turned to no account. 

Panangamme, a considerable village in the Wanny, situated 
on the road to Trincomalee, 20 miles east of Wertalturoe. It 
was formerly the residence of a Wannichy ; but is now, with 
the surrounding district, included in the collectorate of Ma- 
naar. Here are many paddy fields, and the dwellings of 
the inhabitants lie amongst cocoanut and tamarind trees. 

Pandatirippo, a village and parish of Jaflfna, in the province 
ofWaligara, containing 3476 inhabitants, who for the most 
pari uru Christians of the Romish communion. The village 

PAN] Tft« Ceylon Gazetteer. 181 

stands about 3 or 4 miles west of Tillipally, and had formerly 
a magnificent church, and a bouse adjoining built upon arches^ 
with two spacious rooms and gallery, fine gardens; and a fish 
pond. The American Missionaries having obtained the permis- 
sion of government, have repaired the church and dwelling 
house, and made the place one of their stations in the district. 

Panduwas Nuwera, one of the ancient capitals of Ceylon 
in the early period of the Singhalese history. It stood on the 
banks of the Deduroo oya, in the province of Hatrabhage, in 
the Seven Korles, east of Kurnagalle, and took its name from 
its founder Panduwasa, who ascended the throne 604 years 
before the birth of Christ. Very few remains of the city are now 
in existence, and the site can only be traced by the mouldered 
ruins of the royal palace and temples, 

Panebakry, a village, within 6 miles of Colombo, on the 
road to Kandy ; so called from the pottery established there. 
It contains some good houses, beautiful paddy fields, and 
gardens abounding with a variety of fruit trees. 

Pangragam, a considerable village pleasantly situated on 
the right bank of the Mahawelli ganga, having a largo Moorish 

Panichankeny, a village and river of the same name, on the 
road to Trincomalee, 39 miles north west from Batticalo. The 
village is completely enveloped in jungle, inhabited by Wedas, 
Its chief attraction consists in the extensive salt works in the 

Panniagalle, a village on the road from Colombo to BaduUa, 
about 7 miles from the old boundary of the Kandian country, 
and 4^0 miles from Ratnapoora, having a large templet 

PaitoafPanaAe^, a province of Batticalo, at its southeast 

extremity. It ranks below most of the other provinces in 

182 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [PAR 

extent and population. It contains only fourteen villages (of 
which the greater part scarcely deserve to be so called), and the 
\vhole number of the inhabitants does not average more than 
700, In general features, it bears quite a different character 
from the rest of the provinces ; for instead of the uniform 
flatness which is observable in them, here we find a succession 
of rocks and hills, now and then interrupted by extensive 
plains and thick forests. 

Pantura (Panadura), a large and populous village in the 
district of Caltura, situated on the south bank of a river which 
falls into the sea, 15 miles south from Colombo* It received 
its name from a contraction of the Singhalese words "jpamdun- 
ratta," or "the country where lamps were broken ; " and is 
conjectured to have been so called from the story of the devils 
having broke, in one night, the 1000 lamps which had been 
placed there by king Wijeya Bahoo in honor of Budha, 
of whom he was a zealous votary. J t is a place of considerable 
traffic, having a custom house, and much arrack is distilled 
in the neighbourhood. The population in 1814 was estimated 
at 1109, and the second Maha Modliar of the gate is ex- 
officio the chief Vidhan of the village* It has also a court 
house, and is the station of a magistrate. The rest house 
stands opposite the ferry, and is .a neat and convenient build- 
ing. The Wesleyan Mission chapel at this place was erected 
in 1823, under the superintendence of Mr. M*Kenny, one 
of the Missionaries, and was opened for Divine service, in 
presence of Sir Richard Ottley, in the same year. It has 
two dwelling houses attached to it, and a school conducted 
with much regularity. 

Paragoda, an extensive valley, situated below the Hangram- 
kotowa pass, on the confines of Mat ele, in the way towards 
Tumpany and the Four Korles. It contains a number of well 
inhabited Moorish villages ; and besides the paddy which 
it produces, is clothed with rich herbage, affording pasture to 
cattle^ of which there are great numbersi 

PAS] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 188 

ParamaJkande, a small hill in Demclepattoo, about 15 miles 
cast of Putlam^ noted for a Wihare, which stands at the base, 
and also for a cave from which the natives formerly obtained 
saltpetre. Tradition says that it had its name from Farames- 
WARA KooMAREYA, a princc who resided there in ancient 

Parankandel, a village about 5 miles to the east of the rest 
house of Mantotte^ in the province of the same name. It 
contains a scattered population of different castes, a great 
proportion of whom are Vellalas. There is a large church, 
enclosed by a low mud wall, in which the Roman catholic 
Missionaries on the Island were accustomed to hold their 
annual conference; until they removed their head quarters to 
Colombo. The feast of the Ascension of the Blessed Virgin, 
which falls on the I5tb of August, is celebrated here with great 
pomp, and attended on the occasion by devotees from every 
part of the district of Manaar. Adjacent to the church stands a 
number of tamarind and margosa trees, and there are around 
the place several extensive paddy fields, well cultivated and 
watered by two tanks of considerable ^ize. 

Pasdoem Korle, a province ofCaltura, cdltipirehending thre6 
smaller divisions, in which there ate 106 villages, and 14,016 
inhabitants. There are seven schools in the province, stip- 
ported by government. 

Pdsimadoo, a desolatie vilkge, situated on the Aew road 
to Anooradhapoora. It derived its name from the immense 
quantity of green glass bahgles found there ; which has led to 
the belief that a manufactory of that article must have existed 
there in former times. 

Passbage, a village situated at the confluence of the Kot- 
male and Mahawelli ganga. It was once a military station, 
and had a post on a high hill, about 50 feet above the level of 
the river. 

PasserUf once a small military post, lies in a valley situated 
bietweeVi Namunukulakande and Lunugallekande^ 8i tdS&s^ 

1S4 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [PEQ, 

from BaduUa on the road to Hambantotte. The fort stood on 
the top of a bill, above a torrent, and commanded a view 
of the valley, which is well cultivated and tolerably populous. 

Pedro (St.)f ^ small village, about 3 miles north west of 
Mauaar, so called from a church dedicated to Saint Peter. It 
has a fine harbour, and was formerly the dep6t for the chanks 
fished along the coast, previous to their exportation to Bengal. 
About a mile west of this village, completely enveloped 
with jungle, stands a round tower, now quite out of repair, 
supposed to have been built by the Portuguese as an observa- 
tory, or watch tower, for noticing the approach of vessels; 
or, as others say, by the early Mahomedan settlers. 

Peliagodde, a village of Adikaripattoo, in the Hina Korle, 
situated on the north side of the Kalani ganga, about 5 
miles north east of Colombo. It is one of the dispense villages, 
of which the second Maha Modliar is the chief. It supplies 
the market of Colombo with coffee, jaggery, arekanuts, betel 
leaves, and also with different sorts of fruits and vegetables. 
The inhabitants amount to about 800, and have, besides 
a school, two small chapels, one belonging to the Protestants, 
and the other to the Roman catholics. There is also a 
granary, formed of planks, in which the government collection 
of paddy tithes is deposited. 

Pereatory^ a considerable village, situated on the right 
baok of the Mahawelli ganga, 10 miles from Catoopelane. 
It was here that Captain Anderson crossed the river with a 
party of troops on his march from Batticalo to attack Bin- 
tenne, in February 1815. It contains fifty Moorish families, 
who are neither under the Wedas nor the Singhalese, but 
have their own headman. ( Colombo Journal .) 

Periwellipattoo, a province of Demelepattoo, situated to the 
south east of Putlam. It is bounded on the east by Karamba- 
pattoo ; on the west by Putlampattoo ; on the south by 
Panditapattpo ; and on the north by Rajawannia and ^ixji- 

PES] The Ceylon Gazetteir. 185 

mettiapattoo. The Mee oya^ enters the province near Tarasa* 
padi> and rans through its whole extent in a north west 
direction, until it falls into the gulf of Calpentyn. It has 
no hills^ or considerable heights, except the one called Para- 
makande, which has a very ancient Wihare at the base. The 
soil is sandy, but intermixed in some places with whitish 
or red clay; and the inhabitants cultivate large quantities 
of paddy and fine grain. There is a numerous breed of 
buflfaloes and cows, and the forest abounds with game, 

Perrumamadoo, a village situated about 9 miles from the 
lake of Kandelle, on the road from Trincomalee to Kandy. 
It is the first village in the Kandian territory, after crossing 
the limits to the east,— which were marked by a very large 
tamarind tree; and here Mr. Hugh Boyo, ambassador from 
Lord Macartney to the late king of Kandy, made a halt of 
two days, both in his route to and from Kandy. 

PesdIS, a considerable village on a sandy beach near the sea^ 
about 8 miles north west of Manaar, which from its peculiarly 
advantageous situation for fishing, has for a long time been 
a place of some note on the coast. The name of Pesal6 is 
composed of the two Tamul words p6, devil, and sdU, a hall^ 
and is believed to have been so called from its having onca 
abounded with 

<* Drug-working sorcerers, tliat Change the mind ; 
^ Soul-killing witches* that deform the bodj ; 
And many such like libertines of sin." 


It was long a port of entry and export, and had a custom 
house, which was abolished in 1822. The inhabitants (the 
chief part of whom are Parrawas) are estimated at above 
1000, who employ upwards of 200 canoes in the fishery. 
It was hero, according to tradition, that the celebr ited Mis- 
sionary Francis Xavibr effected his first landing, and 
proclaimed the doctrines of his communion with such distia- 
gidshed success. When tho Portuguese were mastord of ttio 

2 B 

186 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [P O I 

place^ they erected a very splendid chnrch at some distance 
from the beach ; bat as it had crumbled into rain, the present 
inhabitants have built a new one in its neighbourhood. 

Pichampitty, a small village in the province of the Wanfiy, 
situated in the midst of jungle, about two days journey to the 
oast of Arrippo. It was once the resort of an immense number 
of pilgrims from almost all parts of the Island, on account of 
the miracles said to have been wrought in the Roman catholic 
chapelf dedicated to St. Anthony, which stands there. The 
offerings collected on the anniversary of the Saint's day 
amounted to many thousand ilixdollars; but it has now 
lost all its celebrity, and scarcely any pilgrimage is under- 

Phpalle, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Pachellepalli, having 678 inhabitants. The soil is light 
and sandy, but well calculated for growing palmyra trees, 
of which there is a great abundance. The village had formerly 
a large church, which, on account of the place having been 
subject to incursions of the Kandians, was surrounded by a 
high wall with port-holes, in the nature of a redoubt. The 
forests in the neighbourhood produce the wood called Jagers- 
wood, and it formed an article of export to the coast of 
Corgmandel during the government of the Dutch, (BdldcBUs.) 

Pohalpittia, a village on the banks of the Kotmale ganga, 
situated in the midst of a country abounding in rich fields, 
fruit groves, and neat cottages. Jt was once a military post, 
but now abandoned. 

Point Pedro, a large village and parish of Jaffna, in the 
province of Wadamarachy, situated at the northern extremity 
of the Island, having 8381 inhabitants. It is called by the 
natives Parettitorre, or '' Cotton Harbour,'' from the great 
quantity of cotton formerly produced here ; but the Portuguese 
changed it into Puntas das Padras, or "rocky point." The 

POL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 187 

village stands in north latitude 9" 5V, and east longitude 
SO*" 2b', about 21 miles north east of Jaffnapatam, and possesses 
a fine harboar, where vessels find a safe anchorage. It is the 
station of a magistrate and assistant custom master, and 
carries on a considerable trade with Madras, and other places 
on the Coromandel coast ; exporting palmyra timber, and im- 
porting grain, cloth, &c. 

Here was formerly a handsome church4>uilt by the Dutch, 
and when Bald^us visited it in 1661, numbered 300 auditors, 
besides 1000 children, who were taught in the school attached 
to it; but it has lately been demolished, and the Hindoo religion 
has regained its predominancy. The Wesleyan Missionaries 
have however formed an establishment and erected a chapel, 
and the Roman catholics too have their place of worship 
at Point Pedro. 

In a war between the Dutch and English, the former 
built a fort here, but scarcely a vestige of it remains at present. 
Bald^us mentions a smart engagement having taken place 
between the Dutch and the Portuguese, and that during the 
siege of Jafihapatam the latter expected to land their suc- 
cours at this placei but were frustrated in the attempt. 

Pollannaroowa, an ancient city of Ceylon, now in ruins, 
is situated in the province of Tamankadawe. King Paisooloo 
SiRiSANOABO 3d, who ascended the throne at Anooradha- 
poora in the year 702, intending to make this city the seat of 
government for the future, established himself there in the latter 
part of his reign ; but on his death, his successor, Walpitti 
Wasidatta, conveyed back the regalia to the former city, 
and abandoned the latter. Aggrabodhi 4th, whose reign 
commenced in the year 7(59, was induced to make Pollan- 
naroowa the capital ; and it continued to enjoy that distinction, 
with little interruption, till the year 1319, when Bhuwanbka 
Bahoo 2d. bestowed the title on Kumagalle, and fixed himself 
at that city. 

It would appear that Pollannaroowa was a city of great 
extent and magnificence ; as at the period ^hen Prakrama 

18G The Ceylon Gazetteer. [P O I 

place^ they erected a very splendid charch at some distance 
from the beach ; bnt as it had crumbled into ruin, the present 
inhabitants have built a new one in its neighbourhood. 

Pichampitty, a small village in the province of the Wanfiy, 
situated in the midst of jungle, about two days journey to the 
oast of Arrippo. It was once the resort of an immense number 
of pilgrims from almost all parts of the Island, on account of 
the miracles said to have been wrought in the Roman catholic 
chapel, dedicated to St. Anthony, which stands there. The 
offerings collected on the anniversary of the Saint's day 
amounted to many thousand ilixdollars ; but it has now 
lost all its celebrity, and scarcely any pilgrimage is under- 

Plopalle, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Pachellepalli, having 678 inhabitants. The soil is light 
and sandy, but well calculated for growing palmyra trees, 
of which there is a great abundance. The village had formerly 
a large church, which, on account of the place having been 
subject to incursions of the Kandians, was surrounded by a 
high wall with port-holes, in the nature of a redoubt. The 
forests in the neighbourhood produce the wood called Jagers- 
wood« and it formed an article of export to the coast of 
Corgmandel during the government of the Dutch, (BdldnBUs.) 

Pohalpittia, a village on the banks of the Kotmale ganga, 
situated in the midst of a country abounding in rich fields, 
fruit groves, and neat cottages. Jt was once a military post, 
but now abandoned. 

Point Pedro, a large village and parish of Jaffna, in the 
province of Wadamarachy, situated at the northern extremity 
of the Island, having 8381 inhabitants. It is called by the 
natives Parettitorre, or '' Cotton Harbour," from the great 
quantity of cotton formerly produced here; but the Portuguese 
changed it into Puntas das Padras, or "rocky point." The 

POL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 187 

village stands in north latitude 9" 51'^ and east longitude 
SO*" 2b\ about 21 miles north east of Jaffnapatam^ and possesses 
a fine harbour, where vessels find a safe anchcMrage. It is the 
station of a magistrate and assistant custom master, and 
carries on a considerable trade with Madras, and other places 
on the Coromandel coast ; exporting palmyra timber, and im- 
porting grain, cloth, &c. 

Here was formerly a handsome church4>uilt by the Dutch, 
and when Bald^us visited it in 1661, numbered 300 auditors, 
besides 1000 children, who were taught in the school attached 
to it; but it has lately been demolished, and the Hindoo religion 
has regained its predominancy. The Wesleyan Missionaries 
have however formed an establishment and erected a chapel, 
and the Roman catholics too have their place of worship 
at Point Pedro. 

In a war between the Dutch and English, the former 
built a fort here, but scarcely a vestige of it remains at present. 
Bald^us mentions a smart engagement having taken place 
between the Dutch and the Portuguese, and that during the 
siege of Jafinapatam the latter expected to land their suc- 
cours at this placei but were frustrated in the attempt. 

Pollannaroowa, an ancient city of Ceylon, now in ruins, 
is situated in the province of Tamankadawe. KingPAisooLOo 
SiRiSANOABO 3d, who ascended the throne at Anooradha- 
poora in the year 702, intending to make this city the seat of 
government for the future, established himself there in the latter 
part of his reign; but on his death, his successor, Walpitti 
Wasidatta, conveyed back the regalia to the former city, 
and abandoned the latter. Aggrabodhi 4th, whose reign 
commenced in the year 7(59, was induced to make Pollan- 
naroowa the capital ; and it continued to enjoy that distinction, 
with little interruption, till the year 1319, when Bjhuwanbka 
Bahoo 2d. bestowed the title on Kumagalle, and fixed himself 
at that city. 

It would appear that Pollannaroowa was a city of great 
extent and magnificence ; as at the period ^hen Prakrama 

168 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [POL 

Bahoo 1st. sat on the throne it was surrounded by a 
rampart^ and the greater streets extended 28 miles, the 
lesser ones 16. Besides a palace of seven stories high, and 
two edifices of five stories for priests and devotees^ and the 
coronation-hall of three stories, in the garden of Manda.- 
O0DBTANA9 all bnilt by the above king, and the Rankot 
Dagoba built by his queen; there were several hospitals, 
and a college foi^medical students erected by the king Dap- 
pooLA 1st,, and also a roost superb structure of several stories 
high, in which a splendid golden image of Budha was 
enshrined, and which was commenced in the reign of Mi- 
HiNOOO 1st. and completed in that of his grandson Mihindoo 
Sd. The place was repeatedly taken by the Malabars, and 
recovered by the Singhalese; but the last time the Malabars 
obtained possession, they completely demolished and reduced 
it to its present state. 

The following is a description of the ruins at PoUannardowa, 
as extracted from the Ceylon Almanac, and it cannot fail to 
interest the reader. 

'* The temples and buildings at Pollannaroowa, are in much 
better preservation than those at Anooradhapoora, but 
cannot be compared to them in point of size. The extent 
of the city also corresponds with the diminished splendour 
and population of Ceylon in the twelfth century, compared 
to what it was in the first century of the Christian era; 
at which time the walls of Anooradhapoora were completed. 

•* In several of the buildings at Pollannaroowa the proper 
arch is to be found in form, but the principle of it does 
not appear to have been understood ; as in general the 
side walls, whether of windows or chambers, approximate 
by each line of bricks projecting a little beyond the lower one, 
and leaving but a small space, which has been filled up 
on the principle of the wedge. 

"The section of the large building constructed in this way, 
would resemble a parabolic curve. The most remarkable 
building at Pollannaroowa is the Jaitawanaraama, into which 
Xoa enter between two large polygonal pillars ; these form the 

POL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 188 

termination of the two side walls of an exterior chamber. 
The interior apartment is mach broader, and opposite to the 
entrance is a %ure of Gautama Budha about fifty feet in 
height. On the outside appear two rows of gothic windows ; 
the npper row is closed, and appears always to have been so. 
The wftUs are of great thickness, bailt of brick« and at one part 
hare a moulding of stone like a verandah ; the height of this 
building is about fifty feet, and the pillars are neatly orna- 

^' The Jaitawanaraama is said to be an exact resemblance 
of Gautama Budha at Sewatnowera in Kosolratta. 

''On a mound opposite to the entrance of Jaitawanaraama, 
are a number of iitone pillars, the remains of Gamsaby Man- 

"From the face of a long and perpendicular rock, three 
gigantic figures of Budha have been formed ; they are in the 
usual positions,— sitting, standing, and reclining ; the last of 
which is upwards of forty feet in length. Between the sitting 
and standing figures, the Isuramuni or Kalangalla Wihare has 
been cut in the rock ; and in this temple part of the stone has 
been left, and shaped into the figure of Budha on a throne. 
The two pillars in the front wall are also part of the solid 

" The Dalada Malegawe ("palace of the tooth) is a small 
building of excellent masonry and neat architecture ; it is 
built of hard stone, which retains the admirable sharpness 
of the original cutting : the roof is flat, and formed of long 
stones. Thuparaama, more commonly called the Rankot 
Dagoba, is the highest at Pollannaroowa. Around the base, 
but forming part of the Dagoba, are eight small chapels, and 
between each, an ornamented projection. Its height from 
the platform is now 159 feet, and like the other ruins, it is 
covered with large trees and creeping plants, 

"The Sat Mahal Prasada is a handsome pyramidical 
building. There is nothing remarkable in the ruins of the 
Matte Daga, Poeyga, Lanka Baama, Meresewatte, Keree 
Wihare, and several other religious buildings which we vi&vteA. 

190 I7l« Ceyhn OazMur. [POM 

** The Banage is encircled by a fence of curious construc- 
tion! in wliicb the two lines of longitudinal bars are of stone, as 
well as the pillars. 

** The palace of Prakram a Bahoo Ist., is situated on the 
borders of the Toopawewa, the waters of which were carried 
through the buildings, and poured by an ornamented spout 
into the king's bath, which is a large circular place built of 
hewn stone, 

** There are two stones covered with inscriptions ; one 
of these, neatly ornamented, is twenty five feet in length, and 
four in breadth. The characters are small and beautifully 
cut, and for the most part Singhalese ; the subject principally 
treated of, is the reign of the king Kirti Nissanga/' 
(Ceylon Almanac.) 

. Pomparippoo, a province of Putlam, bounded on the east by 
Nuwerakalawe and Demelapattoo ; on the west by the gulf of 
Calpentyn ; on the north by the Moderegam river, which sepa- 
rates it from the district of Manaar. It is about 23 miles 
long, and from 8 to 10 miles broad, and contains 35 villages, 
and 498 inhabitants. The face of the country exhibits an 
expanse of large forests, diversified with open tracts ; and 
skirting its western borders, a ridge of hills runs up to 
Koodremalle point. It is supposed that the name Pom- 
parippoo, or Pomparappee, signifying ** the golden plains," 
was bestowed on this province on account of its excellent soil ; 
but owing to a deficiency of population, the operations of the 
plough are now very circumscribed, and the annual produce 
of paddy seldom averages more than 3 or 4000 parrahs. It 
abounds with cattle, and carries on a trade with Colombo in 
ghee, honey, bees' wax, and deer's horn. 

In this province there are the ruins of many ancient build- 
ings, and also of a very large tank called Bawalle Kolam, 
which indicate that this part of the country, at present 
overgrown with jungle, was formerly well populated, and in a 
most flourishing condition. According to a copper saunas, or 
letter patent, dated in the year of Sakha 1469, (corresponding 

POM] I^e Ceylon Gazetteer. 191 

with A. D. 1547) Nawaratna Wanniya, a Mookwa chief- 
tain^ obtained the province from the then king of Seetaawaka 
in hereditary possession or paraweni; but it did not long 
continne in his family^ for on his death his heirs parcelled 
it oat^ and transferred it to other individaals. 

Pomparippoo, a small village^ and the head of the above 
province, situated on a large plain, about 31 miles north from 
Putlam. It has a rest house buitt of stone, and in the neigh- 
bourhood where the people attached to the post reside, there 
are some plantations of plantain trees, and a vineyard. The 
surrounding country exhibits some openings bounded by 
the jungle, and the plain immediately fronting the rest house 
is covered with herbage, 

Pomparippoo, a river which takes its rise from the moun- 
tains in Matele, and embodying itself with, the waters of the 
Kalawewe tank (15 miles north of DambooUa ) meanders, 
through the province of Nuwerakalawe in a north west direc- 
tion. After it enters Pomparippoo it divides itself into five 
branches, and falls into the gulf of Calpentyn. The Singhalese 
call it Kalawa oya, from its passing through the tank of that 
name ; though some will have it to be derived from the cir- 
cumstance of the ancient inhabitants of Nuwerakalawe having 
bathed in its waters, first rubbing their bodies with turmeric 
(kaha) which had been sent to them as a present by the king 
of Kumagalle, as a mark of their contempt for hftn. It abounds 
in fish, but is chiefly remarkable for the *great number of 
alligators which are seen in it. The principal branch of 
this river runs four miles north below the rest house of Pom* 
parippoo, and is fordable except after the heavy rains. 

The remains of a stone bridge, built over this river by the 
king Maha Sen, upwards of 1500 years ago,'were discovered 
by Captain Forbbs, in his journey from . Kumagalle to 
Anooradhapoora, in 1826 ; and we cannot do better than 
extract an account of the same as published in the Ceylon 

199 I%# Ceylon Gazetteer. [POR 

. '^ Near where we crossed the Kalawa oya^ are the remains 
of a stone bridge* consisting of a pier of considerable length, 
projecting into and contracting the stream, which rans both 
broad and. rapid. The stones are from 8 to 14 feet in length, 
laid in regular lines, and some are jointed into one another; 
each course recedes a few inches from the edge of the one 
underneath ; and this form, which offers less direct resistance 
to the carrent, gives additional strength to the building. The 
end of the pier has been swept away, but the extremity of 
what remains was 18 feet above the water, and 6 feet above 
the causeway. 

" In the rock which forms the bed of the river, we could 
distinguish square . holes where pillars had been placed, and 
the bridge has been completed by laying lon<r stones or beams 
of wood on these, so as to connect the different parts of the 
structure/' (Ceylon Almanac.) 

Paneryn (Pooneri), & village and parish of Jaffna, in the 
province of Pachellcpalli, situated on the road to Manaar. 
The village has a small fort built by the Dutch, and a rest 
house for travellers. It is the seat of a magistrate, and 
contains a tolerably large population, with extensive plots 
of paddy laud, diversified with clumps of cocoanut and pal- 
myra trees. 

Porativoe, a province of Batticalo, situated towards its 
south west side, containing but four villages, surrounded with 
paddy fields, and prodigious forests of excellent timber. 

Porativoe, the principal village in the above province, 
situated about IQ miles south of Batticalo. It has a large 
temple sacred to Skanda, entirely built of stone, and sur- 
rounded by a wall of the same material. The inhabitants 
of the village are exclusively Mookwas ; but in the neighbour- 
booi there is a considerable number of gold and silver smiths. 

PUT] "i^ Ceylon Gazetteer. J93 

Potane, a village on the road to Batticalo, 10 miles north 
east of Yalle. It is surrounded with low jungle^ and has 
a large rock with a reservoir of water on it. 

Potane^ a village, once the seat of a Wanniya, now a mere 
desert^ is situated about 10 miles north east of Carrativoe. 
There are some ruins, which are conjectured to be the remains 
of a Hindoo temple, and a bath p:enerally attached to such 
edifices for the purpose of performing ablution. 

Putudiwaytl, a village of Akkarapattoo, about 5 miles 
south west of Putlam, and nearly 24 miles south of Calpentyn, 
having a small manufacture of cotton stuffs, and some planta- 
tions of cocoanuts and plantains. 

Pungudutive (Middleburgh), a small island on the south 
west of Jaffna, is about 10 miles in circumference, and con- 
tains *24I5 inhabitants. Fish and oysters are caught in great 
plenty, affording employment to the greater part of the popula- 
tion, as the ground being rocky is unfit for cultivation. Goats 
abound in the island, and their milk is generally curdled ' 
and made into ghee for exportation. There was formerly a 
Protestant church and school here, but both have long since 

Punnalle, a village in the parish of Chargany, north west of 
Jaffnapatam, which has a very ancient temple enclosed by a 
high wall, having a fine gateway. It is dedicated to Vishnu, 
and the feast, which is celebrated in the month of August, lasts 
ten days. 

Pullam, a district formerly belonging to the Malabar pro- 
vinces, but now included in the dissaveny of Colombo, having 
been annexed to the collectorate of Chilaw since the year 
1806. It is bounded on the east by Demelepattoo and 
Nuwcrakalawe ; on the west by the gulf of Manaar; on the 
south by Chilaw ; and on the north by the Moderagam river. 
In length it may be computed at 48 miles, while the breadth 

2 c 

194 Th€ Ceylon Gazetteer. [PUT 

varies from 8 to 16 miles. It comprises six provinces, the 
names of \vbicb, and the population, are exhibited^ in the 
following return for 1 831. 

Putlam.. 2477 

Calpentyn 2498 

Akkarapattoo 5666 

Poroparippoo ••••••• 498 

Rajawannipattoo • • • • 96 

Kumarawannipattoo •••••• 427 

Total 11,662 

The general feature of the country — if we except Pom- 
parippoo — is uniformly flat, and the soil is well calculated 
for agriculture; but the greater part is uncultivated and waste, 
from the frequent long droughts to which the country is 
subject, and the want of capital for repairing the tanks, in 
which the waters of the periodical rains were formerly secured 
to answer for such occasions. In 1831 the average produce 
of paddy amounted only to 20,062 parrahs, and that of fine 
graius to 1961. It produces a considerable quantity of cocoa* 
nuts, which form the greatest item of its export to the coast of 
Coromandel. Palmyra trees also abound, but the inhabitants 
do not derive much profit from them. Tobacco and cotton 
are cultivated in many parts, and chaya root grows wild all 
over the district. Of fruit trees it has neither jack nor 
orange ; but boasts of a variety of other sorts, such as mango, 
bread fruit, custard apple, pine apple, wood apple, guava, 
pomegranate, shaddi ck, papai, plantain, and grape of 
both kinds. There are also plenty of sweet potatoes and 
yams, and almost all the vegetable products useful for 
culinary purposes as well as medicine. Its manufactures are 
chiefly confined to salt, a coarse kind of cloth, jaggery, cadjans, 
coir rope, fishing nets, baskets, and a small quantity of earthen- 
ware ; and it supplies the Colombo market wilh cocoanut oil, 
and cow ghee. 

The inhabitants are composed of Malabars, Moors, and 
Singhalese, with a comparatively small proportion of Burghers. 

PUT] TJi« Ceyhn Gazetteer. 195 

The number of persons professing the Mahomedan religion 
is estimated at 6902. 

Putlam, one of the provinces of the preceding district^ 
situated along the shore of the gulf of Calpentyn«N To the 
north it is bounded by the mouth of the Welukkey aar; 
to the south by the channel near Odepankarre ; to the east by 
the province of Rajawannipattoo and Kumarawannipattoo ; 
and to the west by the above gulf. It is about 20 miles long, 
and from 4 to 6 miles broad» but exhibits very few traces of 
cultivation, and a great part of it is covered with jungle, 
and much infested with elephants. It possesses an extensive 
manufacture of salt, which renders it of some consequence, and 
attracts the Kandian caravans at all times. It contains 
18 villas:es, eight only of which are inhabited, and consist of a 
varied and scattered population, who chiefly earn their liveli- 
hood by manufacturing salt and cloth, catching fish, and tra- 
ding to the interior ; for which latter purpose they now possess 
great facility, on account of the formation of a new road 
from Putlam to Kurnagalle, planned and accomplished under 
the superintendence of the late Thomas Ralph Back- 
house, Esq. 

From this province a great number of bullocks for slaughter^ 
cows' ghee, deer's horn, gingely, and fine grains are exported 
to Colombo ; and English cloth, spices, sugar, iron, steel, and 
a variety of other articles, are imported in return, 

Putlam ( Putalam), a small town, and the head of the fore- 
going district and province, is situated on the south east shore 
of the gulf of Calpentyn, 85 miles north east from Colombo, in 
8* 5' north latitude, and TS"* 5L* east longitude. It originally 
bore the name of Magultotamune, or " the port of marriage/' 
from the circumstance of WiJAYA Raja, the founder of the 
Singhalese dynasty, having, after his disembarkation (which 
is affirmed to have taken place in the neighbourhood) married 
the princess Koovaini, who lived in solitude in the town 
of Tamana Nuwera^ six miles east of it; but of which 

196 Ttie Ceylon Gazetteer. [P U T 

there are now no traces. The present appellation is derived 
from the Tamul words, pvdu " new/' and alam, *'salt pans,'* 
and was most probably bestowed on it, after the inhabi- 
tants began to roanafacture that useful article at the pface. 
It is supposed to be the Battala visited by Ibu Batuta, 
in the 14th century; and is mentioned in Knox's Historical 
Relations of Ceylon by the name of Portaloon. Jn the 
Singhalese times it was one of the royal villages belonging to 
the Gabada, or treasury, of the kings of Kandy, and the seat of 
a Dis&ave, who presided over the high tribunal styled Mddra- 
madoo, composed of eighteen Mookwa chiefs bearing the title 
of Wanniyas. The Portuguese took possession of the place 
in lf:36, and shortly afterwards erected in the vicinity 
a very large church, which they appointed as a kind of 
bead quarters for their Missionaries, and as the place for 
holding their annual meetings. According to some accounts 
the number of native Christians belonging to this church 
amounted to more than 2000, but when war broke out between 
the Portuguese and the king Raja Singha, the former were 
compelled to surrender the place to the latter, who shortly 
after ordered the church to be demolished| and obliged 
the Christians, as the sworn allies of his enemy, either to 
a1)jure their faith or expatriate themselves, which many did. 
At the time when Bamanatha, a Chetty, vfas Dissave, the 
king Narendra Singha, on his way to Nawekadoe to 
assume the sword of state, made a visit to Putlam, and was so 
mucli pleased with the conduct of the Moorish chiefs on 
the occasion, that be presented them with a flag inscribed with 
the arms of Kandy, and also two chouries, and eighteen silver 
tassels, which are preserved in their principal mosque, and 
carried out in their religions processions. In 1706, the Dutch 
under Captain Imhoff made themselves masters of the place, 
and soon afterwards built a mud fort, surrounded by a moat, 
on the south side of the town, about feOO yards from the 
cocoannt topes mentioned in the line of road. During the 
period the Dutch held possession of Putlam, they established, 
after the model of the ancient Uibunal, a court of justice 

PUT] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 197 

called Landraad, coraposeii of twelve Wanmyas^ iinder the 
presidency of the Dirtcteur OpperhoofVl of Calpentyn, and also 
placed a factor to transact their mercantile concerns in the 

Half way hetween the' fort and the town there formerly 
stood a large s;overnment house in which the Landraad was 
held, and other public business transacted ; but since the 
surrender of the place to the £n;j:lish it has been razed^ and 
two new buildings erected in its vicinity ; of which one is 
occupied as the cutcherry, and tiie other as a rest bouse 
for travellers. 

The town consists of a few hundreds of small houses con- 
structed of mud, and thatched with olas, which are chiefly 
made by Moors, who form the majority of the population. 
In the centre of the town, and contiguous to the bazar, stands a 
very remaikable tree, well worthy the attention of the traveller. 
It is called in Tamul Papparappooli or '* the giant's tamarind/' 
and Perookamaram or **the great tree.'* From the testimony of 
the oldest inhabitants it appears that it has stood for nearly a 
century. It has much the appearance of a rock, being very 
black, and the circumfercuce at its base is 45 feet. Ab(!ut 8i 
feet from the ground it divides into two stems, rising almost 
perpendicularly, one measuring 22| feet, and the other 2f\i in 
circumference, and from these spring numerous lesser branches 
spreading to a considerable extent; but they are so thinly 
covered with leaves that they afford but a partial shade. The 
height is not proportionate to its great bulk, being not more 
than from 70 to 80 feet. The leaves are used medicinally 
In bringing forward tumours; they are also used to feed goats. 
The blossom is white, but possesses neither fragrance nor 
beauty ; — the fruit is of an oblong shape, about five or six 
inches long, and three or four inches thick, the outer surface 
being bard and covered with a downy substance; '-the pulp 
possesses both acidity and sweetness, and is eaten by the 
natives. Near this tree there formerly stood a very handsome 
mosque, the base of which alone is now visible. Independent 
of neveral smfill mosques for the performance of their daily - 

IW The Ceylon Gazetteer. [PUT 

devotions, the Moors hare a fine mosque on the margin 
of the guir, to the left side of the hi^h road, surrounded by 
a low wall; --the gateway is surmounted by a few pillars, 
raised in the form of a minaret, and in this mosque they assem* 
ble for public worship on Fridays and other holy days. 

The soil of Putlam is impregnated with salt, and cocoa- 
nut trees do not flourish in that perfection which they do 
at Calpentyn. There being no good water, the inhabitants 
have no alternative but to use the brackish water which the 
many wells in the place supply, or proceed to the adjacent 
village to fetch better. There arc several tanks in the neigh- 
bouring plain, in which rain water is secured. 

Putlam was formerly a place of considerable trade, and the 
coast vessels resorted to it in great numbers, and brought large 
cargoes of piece goods, consisting of long cloths, chequered 
chelas, comboys, oroomals, and handkerchiefs, which they 
exchanged for arekanuts, coffee, and black pepper. At 
present its trade is chiefly confined to the interior, a barter 
being carried on for paddy, rice, arekanuts, coffee, black pepper, 
cotton, and jaggery, in exchange for salt-fish, salt, cloth, 
copper articles, and chank rings. 

There is a good number of weavers settled at the place, and 
upwards of sixty five looms are in operation in the manufacture 
of coarse cotton goods for the Kandian market. There were 
also formerly many dyers and painters of cloth, who carried on 
their trade on a grand scale, but at present very few can 
find employment. 

The salt pans are situated in an extensive plain about two 
miles from the town, and the water for the manufacture of salt 
is conveyed to the spot by canals cut from the gulf. The 
quantity annually manufactured amounts, on an average, to 
between 100,000 and 1 50,000 parrahs. In 1831 government 
realized by the sale of this article at Putlam alone nearly 
2400/., independent of the exportations to outstations. 

The forests in the neighbourhood afford timber of every kindt 
(calamander excepted^ and are the haanti of elephant^ bears^ 

PTA] The CeyUm Gazetteer. 199 

cheetahs, &c., besides every description of game, \vhich often 
attract large parties of sportsmen from Colombo* 

Puttoor, a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Waligam, having 34b6 inhabitants. The Wesleyan Mis- 
sionaries had formerly a school at this place. 

Pyagalle, a considerable village, 5 miles south of Caltnrat 
on the road to Galle. It is very populous, and has a neat 
church l>elonging to the Roman catholics. Arrack is distilled 
here in great quantities, and a brisk trade is carried on with 
the Coromandel coast in this article, as well as copperahs, 
cocoauuts, and cordage. 


Quiparawa, a small lake on the east side of Kattakadoo, so 
called from the abundance of Qui fish which are found in it» 
It is connected with the Chilaw canal, and at the northern 
extremity, where it is contracted into a small channel, there is 
a wooden bridge thrown over. The bottom is a blue clay, and a 
person once jumping into it, and coming out co\ered with this 
mud up to the knees, obtained for it the name oV^Blue Boots^ 
by which it is now universally known among Europeans. Tho 
neighbourhood both right and left, to the extent of 500 yards, is 
full of bogs of adhesive clay of the same description, and it is 
extremely dangerous for horses or cattle to cross in wet weather. 


Ragampattoo, a division in the province of Alatkoor Korle, 
having 65 villages, and a numerous population. 

200 Tilt Ceylon Gazetteer. [RAN 

RajawannipattoOf a province of D^melepattoo, part of which 
has been lon^ annexed to the district of Puilam. It is 
about 82 miles long, and H miles broad in the widest part. The 
inhabitants, who amount 10 about 400, are scattered over 
its surface. It is very much ovcrjsrown with jungle, and 
infested with elephants, so that the cultivation of paddy 
is carried on to a very small extent when compared with that 
of the other provinces. 

Raly, a villasre. in the parish of Catticotta, west of Jaffha- 
patam, and the rcsid* uce of Viswanatha Sastri^ the 
almanac maker fur the Malabars. 

Rambodda, a small vi1Ias:e in the Kandian provinces, con- 
taining about 30 houses and GO inhabitants, is situated at the 
extremity of a very extensive plain, beavitil'nlly interspersed 
with nndulatinu: hills, on the road from Kandy to Nuwera 
Ellia. There are two beautiful water falls vi.sible from the 
rest house, and which in the rainy season have a grand effect. 
The rest Iwuise is newly built at the expensf> .oC' government, 
and is a substantial buildinsr, containing seven rooms — three of 
which are large and commodious. It is 8f) miles from Kandy 
and 15 miles from Nuwera E.lia, the road to which is through 
one of the thickest jungles in Ceylon. 

Rambooken^ a pleasant village on the bank of the Kalu ganga 
about \i miles north east of Caltnra. it is a very extensive 
place, containing about 2000 inhabitants, and has a school 
belonging to the Wesleyan Missionaries. 

Ranny^ a village and rest house, on the road from Hamban- 
totte to Targalle, 1 1 miles west from Walewy, and 9 miles 
north east of langalle, A river of the same name runs through 
the villdi^'e and falls into the sea, and is so deep after the 
heavy rains that it cannot be forded. 

^ATJ The Ceylon Gazetteer. 201 

Ratmaldne, a village 8 miles soath of Colombo, having: 
a great number of houses, two churches,— one Protestant and 
one Roman Catholic,— one government school, and about 1400 
inhabitants, the greater part of whom are employed in the 
cultivation and peeling of cinnamon. 

Ratnapoora (the city of rubies),— so called from the gems 
which are found among the hills and along the beds of the small 
rivulets in the neighbourhood,-- a military post, and seat of the 
agent of government for the province of Saffragam, is situated 
52 miles south east of Colombo, on the banks of the Kalu 
ganga, which is navigable thus far for paddy boats. The 
fort stands on a low hill on the right bank of the river, 
commanding an extensive and delightful view of the sur« 
rounding coHintry, which is studded with beautifully wooded 
hills and magnificent mountains. Louer down the river, and 
about one mile and a half from the fort, is a village composed of 
a good number of houses, and a Dewalle of some size (occupy- 
ing the site of an old Portuguese fort) dedicated to Sam an, 
or Lakshamam, who accompanied his brother Rama to the 
conquest of Ceylon, and who is regarded as the tutelar deity of 
Saffragam. This temple is much resorted to, and a festival 
takes place at it in the month of t^uly, and lasts about fifteen 
days ; on which occasion the Karandu, or casket containing 
the relic of Budha, is carried out in procession every day by a 
priest, who sits on an elephant richly caparisoned. " In the for* 
mer wars, the apartments of this temple," says Mr, Cordin er, 
" afforded excellent shelter for the troops, who found in several 
chests a greater quantity of silver and copper coins than they 
were capable of carrying away." On the road leading to 
the temple stands the agent's house, built in 1822. It is 
one of the best buildings in the interior, being wholly com- 
posed of granite, and having several good apartments. The 
bazar is extensive, and affords an excellent i^^rket for areka- 
nuts, cardamoms, and every other produce raised in the coun- 
try. The climate, though generally hot, is considered healthy ; 

2 D 

802 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [R Y G 

and the adjacent country yields abundant crops of paddy, and 
every dcseription of fine grain, ( Davy.) 

Ridipane, a hill of considerable sllze, over the top of which 
the road from Kandy to Badulla, by the banks of the Maha- 
welli ganga, has been carried. It is distant aboat one and 
a half mile from BaduUa, and may be seen from that place. 

Ruangwelle^ a military post, and station of the officer 
commanding the Three Korles, is situated on a point of land 
completely surrounded by high hills, contiguous to the junction 
of the Kalani ganga with the Gooroo oya, about 42 miles 
north east of Colombo. It having the advantage of a water 
communication with Colombo, by means of the above river the 
supplies for the interior were brought from thence, to this 
point, during the eventful period of the rebellion. About seven- 
teen years back it was almost a dreary spot, frequented only 
by the Singhalese peasants, but since the British government 
has fixed upon it as a military post, aad erected a fort there, a 
great number of tradesmen have settled from the sea coast 
and formed an eiLtensive bazar. (Davy.J 

Rygam Korle, a province of Caltura, separated on the north 
from Colombo by the river of Pantura, extends a considerable 
distance along the coast. It comprehends five divisions and 
165 villages, and occupies a country well cultivated and 
producing every necessary of life. This province was formerly 
a subordinate principality, of which Rygam Bandara, the 
younger brother of Bhuwaneka Bahoo, 7th king of Cotta, 
was the founder; but for what series of years it retained that 
distinction is not known. 


Saffragam (Habaragamuwa)^ an extensive province in the 
interior, bordering on the district of Caltura, which lies to the 
south west of it. It contains 1684 square milcws, and 44(^57 
inhabitants; of whom, according to the census taken in the year 
1881^ 25000 are exclusively employed in agriculture. The 

SAL] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 303 

surface of the country is much diversified, and presents a suc- 
cession of magnificent mountains, rugged hills, beautifully pic* 
turesque vallies, and immense woods abounding with the most 
valuable timber. The Kalu ganga has its source in this province 
and traverses through it from east to west, and is navigable for 
paddy boats as far as Ratnapoora. The soil in general consists 
of a yellowish clay, intermixed with sand ; but produces a large 
quantity of paddy, gingely, corakan, maize, gram, mustard, and 
a numerous variety of other grains, ^rekanuts, coffee, pepper, 
jack fruit, kittui, talipot, and jamboo also abound; but it cannot 
boast of cocoanut trees in any great abundance. The inhabi- 
tants are Singhalese, who carry on the manufacture of arekanut 
cutters, arrows, spears, firelocks, silver snuff boxes, walking 
canes, umbrellas, talipots, and mats of different sizes and 
descriptions on a very large scale : a great quantity of jaggery 
is also made from the juice of the kittui tree. From the water 
communication which the Kalu ganga furnishes, the province 
possesses great facility for trade. It exports to the low 
country— particularly to Colombo — immense quantities of 
arekanuts, coffee, pepper, cardamoms, turmeric, precious 
stones, elephant tusks, deers' horns, bees' wax, honey, dornatel> 
dammcr, &c., in return for which it imports cotton stuffs, to- 
bacco, salt, salt fish, &c.— 

In this province are found among the hills, and along the 
beds of the small rivulets, cat's eye, ruby, sapphire, tourma- 
line, and other gems, which the natives, with the permission 
of the local government, collect by sifting and washing the 
sand in large baskets with a sieve at the bottom. 

Salpitty Korle, a province of Colombo, in which part of the 
metropolis is situated ; and though small, takes the first rank 
in wealth and population. It comprehends two divisions, 
namely, Pallapattoo and Odugahapattoo ; the former contain- 
ing 91 villages, and the latter 17, and the population of both 
amounted in 1814 to 21D92. The soil is composed of a reddish 
clay mixed with sandy ferruginous particles. It yields but 
a very small proportion of paddy, but this deficiency is fully 

S04 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [SEN 

compensated by the numerous variety of yams with which 
it abounds, besides fruit trees common to the other provinces. 
The inhabitants have very little trade with the interior; 
but those who live in the maritime parts carry on an extensive 
traffic with the opposite coast in the articles of their manufac- 
ture, w hich chiefly consist of arrack> cordage, oil, &c. 

Sammantorre, one of the provinces of Batticalo, situated on 
its south side. It is the smallest of all, containing only 
nine villages,— -of which the one called by the same name is 
oi some consequence, and in I8l4 had 896 inhabitants, while 
all the rest together numbered but 618. 

Sangany^ a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Waligam, and the next north of Batticotta. It contains 
4040 inhabitants, has a pottery and a daily market, 

Seedoowa, a village of Dasiapattoo, in the Alutkoor Korle, 
situated about 8 miles from Negombo, and 3 miles off the 
Colombo road to the left. It is tolerably well inhabited, 
and contains a Wesleyan Mission chapel and school. 

Seegiri, an ancient fortress, (now in ruins) is situated in the 
province of Nuwerakalawe, about 4 miles from Oulandan^awa. 
It is affirmed that this fortress was built in or about the 
year 478 by Kaasyappa 1st., who removed thither the trea- 
sures and regalia of the empire, and made it the seat of his 
government, to secure himself from the attacks of the Malabar 
invaders. The name Seegiri, or Seehagira, was bestowed on it 
from the rock on which it stood having been ornamented with 
the figures of lions. (Ceylon Almanac.) 

Senakoodiyiruppoo, a village situated on the left side of the 
Kurnegalle road, in a grove of cocoanut trees, about a mile 
and a half east of Putlam. Near this village stood a church 
erected by the Portuguese, but afterwards demolished by the 
Kandyans when the former lost Putlam. It is the only place 
in all the neighbourhood where good water is to be founds and 
the inhabitants of Pudam obtain their daily supply from 

SIT] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 305 

the wells there. This place was once famons for its calico 

Sitawaka, once a royal residence, is situated on the 
Kalani ganga, about 80 miles east of Colombo^ in latitude 
7* 2* north, and longitude 80' i3* east. It probably received its 
name from Sita (the consort of Rama), who is supposed 
to have been imprisoned in a grove somewhere in the neigh- 
bourhood. In the jungle adjoining the present village some 
parts of the ruins of the ancient city are still extant ;— they 
consist of the foundation, and parts of the walls of the palace 
and Wihares, which latter are said to have been demolished by 
the Portuguese when they were masters of the place ; and this 
is probable, from the circumstance of their having erected a 
small fort here, the remains of which are still visible on the 
Colombo side of the river. 

In more early periods when the Island was under the domi- 
nion of no less than sixfeen kings, the one who reigned at Sita- 
waka was acknowled<!:ed as supreme, on account of his descent 
from the legitimate stock of a prince of Tanassery, in token of 
which he was presented every year with a gold arm ring, on 
which were engraved sixteen heads ; and a meeting of the kings 
was also held at the capital to celebrate a great festival which 
lasted sixteen days, corresponding with their numbers. In after 
times however, this mark of homage on the part of the other 
kings fell by degrees into disuse, and a spirit of independence 
began to prevail among them, though they made no objection 
to the king of Sitawaka bearing the nominal title of emperor. 

When the Portuguese arrived at Colombo the seat of the 
empire was at Cotta, and Sitawaka was the capital of 
a tributary king. Some time afterwards, when the emperor 
Bhuwaneka Bahoo 7th solicited the assistance of the Portu- 
guese to secure the interests of his grandson Dharma Paala, 
who be intended should be his successor, Maaya Dunnai, 
king of Sitawaka (who was brother to the emperor), declared 
himself averse to the measure,-- called in the aid of the Moors 
from the opposite coast, and laid siege to the city of Cotta ; 
but he failed in his project^ and having becu {\sitv^\v.^l <^^^.^^^^ 

206 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [S E V 

one presiding over its revenue and the other over its jadicial 
affairs — and besides these there are two Singhalese Dissaves, 
but their office is merely nominal. 

T A I 

Tally, a considerable village of Akkarapattoo, situated 
on the right bank of the Calpentyn gulf, in a grove of cocoanut 
trees, about 8 miles north west from Putlam by water. The 
inhabitants arc Moors, and there is a small mosqae for their 
use. There is good fishing in the neighbourhood, which is 
carried on by erecting enclosures in the shallow parts of the 

Talamanaar, a village of Manaar, forming the south west 
ano;Ie of that island, and from whence travelltrs are ferried 
over to the continent of India. It contains about tiOO in- 
habitants, of whom the greater portion are fishermen. Inhere 
is a small Roman catholic chapel in the midst of cocoanut and 
palmyra topes. In the vicinity are several mounds of sand 
collected by the wind, to which this part of the island is very 
much exposed, 

Taldenia, a village of Doombera, situated on the road from 
Kandy to Bdtticalu, through Biutennc and Kattabow^^ 9k miles 
east of Lewelle. 

Tallawittia, a village of Safiragam, situated on the road 
from Colombo to Ratnapoora, through Avisahavil6, 412 miles 
from the former place, and 16| from the latter. 

Tamana Nuwera, the most ancient town on the island^ once 
famous for the residence of Koovaini, who was espoused 
to WiJAYA Raja the firi^t king of the Singhalese dynasty. 
WiJ A YA made it the seat of his government in the year 543 
before Christ, and reigned there for a period of thirty eight 
years. The site of this celebrated toun is situated at a 
place called Tamanawille, about (i miles east of Putlam, but 
time has obliterated all traces of its former existence. 

TAM] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 909 

Tamankadewe^ a district of the interior, which lies to the 
eastward of Kandy, and incladed in the collectorate of 
Trincomalee. It eiphraccs an extent of 6i4 square miles, 
with a population of 2'^'7 souls. In earlier periods this 
district contained a large population; and having been fur- 
nished with extensive means for irrigation, it produced inex- 
haustible supplies of grain, and well merited the title of the gra- 
nary of the Island. At present a great proportion of the lands 
lie waste, covered with morasses, and the produce of paddy is 
consequently reduced. The forests abound in game, and supply 
the best ebony, satin, cattamanao, and iron wood timber. 
A small trade is carried on with the maritime provinces by 
cattle conveyance ; but should the Mahawelli ganga, which 
traverses through it, be cleared of the obstructions at its mouth 
and other parts, a very extensive and prosperous trade might 
be opened. 

Tambalagam (Tdmhuligama^ the village of betel leaO»& 
province of Trincomaloe, in length 20 miles from north to 
south, and from !0 to 15 miles in breadth. To the east it is 
bounded by the inner harbour of Trincomalee and Cottiar ; on 
the west by the Wanny ; on the north by Kattookolanpattoo ; 
andxon the south by Tamankadewe* 

Tamhatagam^ the chief village in the preceding province, 14 
miles north west of Trincomalee, on the margin of a small bay; 
]t contains a Hindoo temple of considerable antiquity and note> 
and has a rest house for travellers. It aboond.s with paddy 
fields, and being constantly watered by the river which flows 
from the lake of Kandally, always wears a verdant and 
flourishing appearance. The old road from Kandy to Trinco- 
malee passes through this village. 

Tamhagamme^ a village and parish of Jaffna, in the province 
of Pachellepalli, bordering along the coast in a south east 
direction from Jaffnapatam« The population is not very consi- 
derable, and the face of the country presents few trafie« 

2 B 

&10 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [TIL 

of cultivation, independent of the palmyra groves and a few 
paddy fields. 

Tangalle, a town in the province of Mahagampattoo, for- 
merly a small obscure village, but now the seat of the collector 
of the district. It is situated 22 miles north east from Matura, 
on the road to Batticalo, which rnos along the shore ; and has 
a small fort, containing several good buildings^ and a reservoir 
for water like the one at Manaar. The inhabitants are mostly 
fishermen, and carry on their trade with uncommon industry. 
The soil is sandy, mixed with gravel and stones ; and there 
are several hills near it which much embellish the place* 

Tapena, a village of Saffragam, situated on the road from 
Colombo to Ratnapoora, by AvisahdviI6, 6 miles from Tal- 

Tempala, a village situated quite in the jungle, about 10 
miles from Negombo, and at a considerable distance off 
the Colombo road. The Wesleyan Missionaries have here a 
small chapel, which, from its situation on an elevated spot, has 
a beautiful appearance. 

Tibbattoogodde, a considerable village in the province of 
Walapanne, 30 miles from Kandy, nearly in a south east 
direction, it was a post of some consequence daring the 
rebellion. Andenivelle Mohattale, who was the leader 
of the party which murdered Mr. Kennedy, had a house 
in the neighbourh(»od of this village, which was entirely 
destroyed by a small detachment sent for that purpose from 
BaduUa, by Lieut. Col. Hoor. (Ceylon Gazette.) 

Tilliaddy, a fishing village, situated on the arm of the gulf of 
Calpentyn, which divides it from the isthmus of Mutwal. The in- 
habitants are all Mahomedans, and have several boats in which 
they go out to sea, and fish with hempen nets. Salt is spon- 
taneously formed in the neighbourhood during the dry season,^- 
tbe revenue derived from which was formerly enjoyed by 

TOT] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 211 

the Canicopoly, or interpreter to the resident, as a perquisite ; 
hence the appellation of ** Canakankailyy" or " Canicopoly's 
Marsh/' by which it is generally known. 

Tillipally^ a villa8;e and piirish of Jaffna, in the province of 
Waligam. Its population amounts to 5074, and is one of the 
best cultivated parishes in the above district, abounding in all 
sorts of fruit trees, arekanuts, and grain. The American 
Missionaries have here established schools, and repaired the 
old Dutch church and dwelling house. 

Tolpnram (the old city), a villagejn the parish of Cangany, 
in Jaffna, which was formerly the seat of several of the chief- 
tains of the district. It has at present nothing that deserves 
notice, and there are few inhabitants. 

Tope (a grove), a fine village situated on the banks of the 
Maha oya, opposite to Kaymel, d miles north from Ne- 
gombo. It is almost enveloped in groves of teak trees planted 
by the Datch. The inhabitants ( who are Cbetties ) are 
very industrious, and cultivate the best tobacco with suc- 
cess ; but they are rustic in their manners almost to a proverb. 
There is a Roman catholic chapel at this place, and a dwel- 
ling house for the priest when he makes his periodical visi- 

Topette, a village of Uwa, situated on the road from Badulla 
to Fort M' Donald, 8| miles from the former place, and 10 
miles from the latter. 

Topore, a very pretty village in the province of Cottiar, 
situated amidst rich paddy fields, interspersed with tamarind 
trees of very majestic size and imposins; appearance. It is 34 
miles distant from Triucomalee, and is inhabited by Malabars 
and Moors. 

Totawelly (tlie garden plain), a small village of Manaar, 
about 3 miles from that town. The inhabitaata c^vcl^Ssx 

913 The CeyUm Gazetteer. [T R I 

of that class of people ^bo dig for chaya roots, vibich aboand 
in the neighbourhood, and form an article of export to Madora, 
and other parts of the Coromandel coast. There was formerly 
a magnificent church erected by the Portuguese ; but since it 
has fallen into ruin, the inhabitants, who are Roman catholics, 
have built a small one in its stead, in ivhich the feast of 
Pentecost is celebrated with great pomp, 

Trikoil (Tirukovil, the holy temple), a small village situated 
on a sandy beach near the sea, 23 miles from Arrookgam. 
It is enclosed on the land side by thick forests, and has a largo 
ancient Hindoo temple sacred to Skanda, the god of war. 

Trincomalee, a town of considerable importance on tho 
north east coast of Ceylon, is situated in 8* 31' north latitude, 
and in 81"* 2o' east longitude^ at the distance of 130 miles 
south east of Jaffnapatam. The Malabars call it Tiruk- 
tonathamaleif or'' the mountain of the sacred Konatha," from 
the Hindoo god of that name, who had formerly a temple 
on the summit of one of the hills there, and which was once 
celebrated all over India. Its excellent harbour renders it an 
acquisition of inestimable value to England, and it is said that 
the whole of her navy could ride in it in perfect security. 
From the advantage which this harbour offers, the British 
government have made it the chief Naval Depot for the ships 
of war on the Indian station, and also formed a dock-yard 
for refitting vessels. The fort occupies an extent of nearly 
three miles, and includes a hill immediately over the sea. 
Within the walls (here are several ranges of buildings, mostly 
erected on the lower ground, close to the landirg place. It has 
also a citadel for defending the harbour, called Fort Osten- 
burgh, erected on a clifi* which projects into the sea, about 3 
miles to the west of Trincomalee, and this cannot be attacked 
till after the capture of the lower fort. 

The town, which is separated from the fort by a spacious 
esplanade, is more extensive than Colombo^ but contains a 
smaller population; and tho houses aro neither neat nor 

TRI] The Ceylon Gazette^'. 31S 

regularly placed. There are but few settlers from Europe, the 
society being composed exclusively of the civil and military 
officers stationed there. It is the station of a Colonial Chap* 
lain, who, as there is no Protestant Church, performs Divi le ser- 
vice in a large room belonging to the military hospital. It has 
two Roman catholic chapels, and several mosques and temples 
belonging to the Moors and Malabars, who form the mass of 
the inhabitants. The Wesley an Missionaries have also an 
establishment here. The bazar is very extensive, and shops of 
various classes of artificers and mechanics are found in differ- 
ent parts of the town. 

The neighbourhood of Trincomalee abounds in hills covered 
with wood, and upon the whole presents a picturesque scenery 
scarcely rivalled by any of the other settlements ; the climate 
however is excessively hot, and the range of the thermometer 
is from 74|'' to 9I|<> throughout the whole year. 

Formerly there were several extensive plantations of cocoa- 
nut trees fronting the esplanade, but they have been long since 
cut down, from an unfounded supposition that they contribu- 
ted to render the place unhealthy. 

The district dependent on Trincomalee is very extensive, 
being computed to contain about 1680 square miles; and 
the population, including that of the town, amounts to 16335 
souls* Timber of various descriptions is found in the forests, of 
which ebony forms an article of export to England, while the 
rest is exported to Madras, and other eastern markets. 

Trincomalee appears to have been a place of some note 
even in the most early periods of history. According to tradi- 
tions, which are vouched for by Kaviraja V^arsthaybn, 
an ancient bard of great celebrity, it was founded by the kiiig 
KuLAKKOTTOO Maha Raja 1589 years B. C, or 512 of the 
kaling^ This king was the son of Mango Nitikanea Solbn, 
sovereign of the coast of Coromandel, who, being apprised 
of the sacredness of the mountain of Trincomalee, came over« 
and having built a temple to Konatha (or Koneser) oa 
its summit, founded a tovvn below, which he colonia&ed Ctom.'^^ 

214 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [TU M 

domiDioiui of his father, and g:ave it over to a Malabar noble- 
man named Taniunna Popalrn, ^bo became the chief 
governor of the place, and the territories dependent thereon. 
The Wanniyas, who subsequently governed the country, 
traced their pcdis:ree to this nobleman, and maintained an 
independent authority for a long series of years. 

When the Portuguese made themselves masters of the place^ 
they demolished the temple for which it was celebrated, and out 
of the materials which it furnished, erected a fort on the north 
west p«Mnt of the bay in the year 1622. In 1672 M. Db la 
II A YE, the commander of a French squadron, attempted to 
form a settlement here, and having opened a correspondence 
with the Icing of Kandy, obtained leave to build a fort ; but 
the vigorous opposition he met with from the Dutch compelled 
him to abandon the project, and he bore away for the Coro- 
mandel coast. About the middle of January 1782, a British 
fleet under the command of Sir Edvitard Hughes, and a 
land force under Sir Hector Munro, made themselves 
masters of the place, of which however they were shortly 
afterwards dispossessed by the French Admiral Suffrein, 
who restored it to the Dutch. In the year I79.>, it was again 
taken by the British, under General Stewart, after a siege of 
three weeks, and has ever since remained in their possession. 
( Philalethes, Hamilton, bic.) 

Tumpani, a district situated between the Seven and Four 
Korles, Harispattoo, and Yattinuwera. The Sinj»halese call it 
Tumpanahaii^ or " three fifties," having been originally peopled 
by 150 families of Ga J A Baiioo's captives. It is a country 
interspersed with hills and dales, and produces abundance of 


Udapalatta^ a province of Udaratta, in the interior, situated 
to the southward of Kandy. In it stood the town called 
Nel}emby Nuwera> \vhither king Raja Singha 2d retired, aad 

UWA] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 215 

kept his court when he had abandoned Kandy. The country 
though mountainous and hiUy, is yet somewhat free from jungle, 
and yields abundant crops of paddy, corakan, indigo, and 
amoo, both the low and high grounds being well calculated for 
their cultivation. 

Udaratta, the largest division in the interior, comprehending 
the provinces of Udunuwera, Yattinuwera, Tumpany^Haris- 
pattoo, the Lower and Upper Doombera, and Hewahette, 
having an extent of 1 1 28 square miles, and 62906 inhabitants, 
or &8 to the square mile. 

Uwa, a considerable province in the interior lying to the 
eastward of Kandy, and separated from the Saffragam Korle 
by the river called Goorakondcra oya. It includes an area 
of 4 114 square miles, and the population in 1831 was 22420. 
It is divided into two parts, namely, the Lower and Upper 
Uwa ; which are again subdivided into many korles or pattoos. 
The natural features of this province ^re varied and magnifi- 
cent. Some parts are covered with vast forests, aud others 
open to the view a fine flat country, as far as the eye can trace 
without any jungle ; while in others, hills and muuuiains bulge 
in irregular figures all over the same. There are some plains 
in which 5000 men could be manoeuvered. It possei^srs a very 
salubrious climate, not inimical to European constitutions; and 
the soil is so well calculated for agriculture, that grain is 
raised with very little difficulty, and it produces the best de- 
scription of cofiee in the Island. Potatoes have been lately 
introduced from Bengal, and they are cultivated in consider- 
able quantities: already they form some portion of the diet 
of the inhabitants, and the bazars at Colombo and Kandy are 
well supplied from, hence with ihat article. It has a large 
breed of cattle which are scarcely excelled by any in the 
interior, in either quality or description ; but Knox says, that 
if they ** be carried to any other parts in the Island they will 
commonly die," and ^* the reason whereof no man can tell.*^ 

910 lU Ceylon Gazetteer. [ V I L 



Velangtihena, a small military post established daring the 
rebellion, is situated in Uwa, 8 miles from Kalupan^, across 
the Idal^ashena mountain. It stands at the foot of a hill 
bearing the same name, 3040 feet above the level of the sea. 

Verlaltivoe (or WerlleteevoeX a principal village in that 
part of the Wanny subject to the collector of Manaar, is 
situatt^d about 9 miles north of Mantotte. Its inhabitants^ 
v?ho are Moors, carry on a considtrahle manufacture of salt; 
and there is a storehouse for the reception of the paddy tithes, 
and also a rest house for travellers. It is a post station, and 
from hence there is a road through the Wanny to Trincomalee ; 
and a distance of 55 miles is saved by travelling this road 
instead of going by vray of Jaffna* 

In 1803 the rebel chief Pandara Wanniya entered the 
village at the head of a considerable body of Kandyans, iirlth 
the intention of plundnring it, but he was not allowed to carry 
bis mischievous plan into effect, for, on the approach of Major 
Vincent, of H. M. I9th regiment, uith a detachment of 
the Manaar Independent Company, he was obliged to make 
a precipitate retreat, and never afterwards appeared in this 
quarter, f Cordiner.) 

Villaway^ a village of Saffragam, so named from the Villa- 
way, or Walawe ganga, which runs past it at the distance of a 
mile or two. It lies on the road from Galle to Kandy, 46 miles 
from Matura, in a most beautiful situation, having a high hill 
on the left, cultivated to the very top, 

Villaghepolla, a villasfe in the province of Saffragam, sitnated 
on the road fr>m Galle to Kandy, 65 miles north west of 
Matnra, surrounded by high hills, which are covered in the 
season with crops of corakan in many places. There are> 
{Treaty numbers of talipot trees in this village. 

V I R] The Ceylon Gazetteer. 217 

Virdodde, a village in the province of Akkarapattoo adjoin- 
ing to Paladiwayel, 7 miles south west of Putlam, and 2() miles 
soath of Calpentyn. it was formerly a place of some con- 
sideration as the seat and domain of one of the Wanniyas of 
the Muddremadoo^ but is now nearly deserted. 

Virgel, a river branching off from the Mahawelli ganga 
at Kurinjamoone^ falls into the sea *^5 miles southward of 
Trincomalee, and separates that district from Batticalo* Near 
the mouth of this river there is a village of the same name, 
where the Malabars have a very large temple^ with extensive 
paddy fields attached to it 

Virundaqodde^ an ancient town which stood in Rajawanni- 
pattoo, about 10 or 11 miles north east of Carrativoe. Except 
a Wihare^ excavated from the side of a large rock, and a 
few granite pillars, scattered in different places, no other relics 
of the town remain ; and these are now completely overgrown 
vrith thick jungle. According to tradition, Sali Kumaraya, 
son of the king Dootoogaimoonoo, having been excluded from 
the throne for marrying a celebrated beauty beneath his rank, 
founded this town and settled himself with his family. 


Wahacotta, a village of Matele, most beautifully situated 
in one of those sequestered valleys which intersect the 
mountains of that district. It contains a small Roman catholic 
church, built of mud and thatched with straw ; and the inhabi- 
tants, who all belong to that profession, arc supposed to be the 
descendants of the Portuguese who settled there during the pe- 
riod in which they were masters of the country. When the king 
KirtbbSree Raja Singha, ordered the Christian churches 
in bU dominions to be destroyed, he spared the one at thift 

2 F 

220 TTie Ceylon Gazetteer. [W A B 

desultory warfare continacd for a long time^ and the people 
were subjected in conseqaence to many hardships ; and Koo- 
MARA SsGARAy Modliar of Mullativoe, was executed, with 
several others, on ia suspicioa of treason. After several an* 
successful expeditious from the different posts. Captain Dri- 
BRR6 on the 31st of October 1803, had the good fortune 
to surprise the Pandara Wanniya's troops, of which a 
great number were I&iiled ; forty six prisoners taken, besides a 
Singhalese field piece carrying a ball of l|lb., fifty five stand of 
arms, twelve pikes, two swords, tuo cresses and two basketa 
of ammunition. Lieut. Jewell also succeeded in destroying 
seme strong works thrown up by the enemy, and seizing 
a considerable number of cattle. These gallant ofiicers at 
len«{th cleared the country of the rebels and restored public 
tranquillity, although they failed to secure the person of 
the rebel chief, who is said to have died a long time after- 
wards at Panangamme. 

From 171)0 to 1818, the whole of the Wanny was a separate 
GoUectorate, but was afterwards dismembered, and eight divi- 
sions, called Melpattoo north, Melpattoo south, Melpattoa 
cast, Kelekoomooly north, Odeaver, Mulliawalle, Karikattoo- 
mooly north, and Karikattoomooly south, were annexed to 
Trincomalec ; five divisions, called Mcerkoomooly, Panan- 
gamme, Naduchettykolam, Sinnechettykolam, and Kelekoo- 
mooly south, were annexed to Manaar ; and the four divisions 
called Karnawelpattoo north, Karnawelpattoo south, Toone^ 
kay, and Pudookoodiyiruppoe were annexed to Jafina. 

WarrakapoUe, a village, rest house, and post station oo the 
road to Kandy, ^5 miles east from Colombo. 

Warreny, a parish of Jaffna in the province of Tenmarachy, 
situated to the southward of Jaffnapatam. It contains 5148 
inhabitants. Its products chiefly consist of cocoanut, palmyra, 
arekanut, plantain, and cashew, as the soil is too sandy 
for paddy. 

WEL] Tke Ceylon Gazetteer. 231 

Waskadoowet a considerable village about 2 miles north of 
Caltura^ on the road to Colombo^ containing a numerous popn- 
lation^ several stills for making arrack, manufactories for 
cordage, and extensive fisheries. 

Watapologay a village of Yattinuwera» situated near the 
ferry of that name, 3 miles from Kandy. 

Wawelle^ a village of Wellebodepattoo, situated on a rising 
ground^ 10 miles from Galle, and a short distance from the 
Colombo road. Here' is a school belonging to the Wesleyan 

Welarte^ an island off Jaffna, directly opposite to the parish 
of Batticotta, containing 1514 inhabitants. It has a large 
breed of cattle and goats ; and produces paddy, cocoanuts, and 

Welasse, a district of the interior, bounded on the east 
by Butticalo; on the west and north by Bintenne; and 
on the south by the Lower Uwa. It is comparatively low 
ground, almost plain, bounded by hills, with a mixture of open 
tracts and jungles, which are infested with elephants, wild 
bogs, elk, and deer. In consequence of its being subject 
to long droughts the climate is very unwholesome, and at 
a certain season of the year endemic fever prevails, uhich 
carries off many persons. In 1817, between the 11th of 
July, and the 20th of October, out of 250 Europeans sta- 
tioned in the district, only one third escaped. The in- 
habitants raise two crops of paddy and two of fine grains 
in a year, but the cultivation is on a comparatively small 
scale. It was here that the rebellion of 1817 first broke 
out by the setting up of a pretender to the throne, and 
ultimately by shooting at and killing Mr. Wilson the agent 
of government in Uwa, who had gone out with a small party 
otmilitary, for the purpose of inquiring into the cause of the 
murder of a Moorman^ Hadji Mahandirah oC l^^^^w.^. 


222 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [W I J 

(who had been appointed chief over the Moors of Welasse) by 
some of the partisans of the pretender. (Davy. J 

Wellebodepattoo, a province of Matura, extending: alons^ the 
sonth east coast from Dondera Head to the mouth of the 
KahaWatte oya. The population was estimated in 1814 at 


Wellebodepattoo, a pfovince of Galle, containig 25 villages, 
and a numerous population. 

Welfevkarre, a \illaore of Akkarapatt^o, sitnatcd about 3 
miles south west of Calpcntyn, almost embowered in cocoanat 
trees. There is a large lake in this village, the water of which, 
the natives say, was once fresh, and frequented by nymphs. 
Fish is abundant, but there are only three or four sorts. Salt is 
spontaneously formed in several spots during the dry season. 
Some ruins are to be seen at a short distance from this lake 
to the southward, supposed to be of those a palace belongin 
to the ancient kings. 


Wiyaloowa, a minor province of Uwa, remarkable in the 
annals of Ceylon for a battle fought there in 1630 between the 
Portuguese and the Kandyans; in which Raja Singh a Sd, 
who was then only seventeen years of age, and who command^ 
cd the latter, gained a complete victory over the former, and 
made their general Don Constantino Db Saa a prisoner. 

Wfjittapoora, an ancient city celebrated in the annals of Cey- 
lon tor the siege its fort underwent during the wars of £LiAL.l.a 
and DooTooGAiMooNOo, in the second century before the 
birth of Christ. It received the name from Wejitta, one of 
the brothers of Paanduwaasa's queen, who founded it with 
the permission of his brother-in-law, and made it the capital of 
a subordinate principality. The remains of the fort are still in 
existence, and the ground plan of the works and of the moat 
i^und them are distinctly to be traced. (Ceylon Almanac, ) 

YAP] Hie Ceylon Gazetteer. 


Yagampattoo, a province of Chilaw lying between Meda- 
palatte, and Moncsserampattoo. It is about 17 miles Ion? 
from south to north, and from 3 to 7 miles broad from east to 
west, and contains 48 viilap^es, and .1088 inhabitants. The soil 
is well cultivated, and produces large crops of paddy, besides 
cocoannts, jack fruits, cinnamon, coffee, and biick pepper. 
It abounds in iron ore, and derives its name from that circum- 

Yalle, a considerable river (which bears also the names 
of Parapa oya and Manick ganga), formed by the union of 
two small mountain streams near Allipoot. AftcT a sh<irt 
course, it runs towards Bootelle in a south east direction ; 
from thence it turns off south west, passes by Kattras:am, and 
then once more chanu:ini[; its course to east enters the sea 
near the Elephant Rock in Mahagampattoo. 

Yapahoo, an ancient town which stood in the Visideka- 
pattoo, Se\en Korlrs. It is at present an entire desert^ 
and contains only a Wihare situated on a hill in the neiiihbour- 
hood. It bore in history the name of Subha Pubhattoo, 
and was founded by the king BjsatWbjaya BAHooJth, 
before his accession to the throne of Pollannaroowa, in the 
year 1301, and was assigned to his brother Bhuwaneka 
BAfioo to reside in. VVhon the king was murdered by his 
minister Mitta Sbna, Bhuwanbka Bahuo happened to 
be at the capital, and was nearly sharing his brother's fate; but 
he succeeded in escaping to Yapahoo, and on the murder of 
Mitta Skna by (he late king's officers, the army declaring for 
him, he was brought back to the capital, and crowned amidst 
the acclamations of the people. He however had such a regard 
for Yapahoo, that he transferred the regalia thither and made 
it the capital ; but soon afterwards an army of Kolasaikbka, 
king of Madura, took it by storm^ and carried off the Dalada 

224 The Ceylon Gazetteer. [Y A T 

relic; and Prakrama BAHOoSd ^ho succeeded Bhuwanaka 
Bahoo, deprived it of its pre-eminence, and again transferred 
the seat of government to Pollannaroowa; allowing Yapahoo 
however to form the seat of some members of the royal family ; 
— for it appears that Bhuwanbka Bahoo Gth, who had the 
temerity to attack Cotta, and ultimately succeeded to the 
sovereignty by putting Java Bahoo 2d to deaths was residing 
here previous to these events. 

Yattigdhapattoo, a division of the province of Hapitigam 
Korle, containing 60 villages and a numerous population. 

Yattikalane, a small province in the district of Chilaw, 
formerly distinct^ but now incorporated with that of Yagam- 
pattoo. There is a village bearing the same name, lying 
on the Kaddoopitty oya, about 16 miles south of Chilaw. 

Yattinuwera^ a province of the interior, which enjoys a pre- 
eminence over the rest, from its containing the inland metro- 
polis^Kandy. It is a beautiful country, and being studded 
with several majestic hills and mountains, which are inter- 
sected by spacious valleys, it exhibits the richest variety 
of scenery ever beheld. It is very populous, and is not 
deficient in natural products. The inhabitants raise two crops 
of paddy and fine grain in the year, which are cultivated 
both in the low and high grounds. 









The Tamuk (or as commonly thongh improperly denomi- 
nated by Europeans Malabars) are, according to the ancient 
institutions of the country, divided into four principal varna 
or tribes. The first is called Firama ; the second Katriya ; 
the third Vaisya ; and tlie fourth Siitra. 

Ir^ the book entitled Slti pela Sbl, or " Division of Castes," 
the Pirama or Pir&tnaner are represented to have originally 
emanated from the face of Piramen ; the Katriyas from 
his shoulders; the Vaisyas from his thighs; and the SAtras 
from his feet. This is but an allesfory, yet serves to distinguish 
the rank and quality of the respective tribes. 

I. The Pirdmaner can alone officiate in the priesthood, like 
the Levites among the Hebrews. Though their Vidas or laws, 
prohibit their interfering in secular employments ( requiring 
them to attend solely to religious matters), yet it is not con- 
sidered derogatory i'or them to brar arms, or to apply them- 
selves to the peaceable arts of agriculture or commerce, 
provided their particular xiutios prove insufficient for their 
maintenance. The Pir&maner subdivide themselves into a 
variety of small gbtras, or tribes, denominated after the patro- 
nymics of their respective founders, or the particular mode 
of worship followed by them. 

The following is a Catalogue of the several subdivisions of 
the Pir&maner^ as iar as 1 have been able to trace them 
out from the best sources of information. 

228 Tamul Castes. 

1 Vadamer 13 Palter 

2 Kodi vadamer 14 Slioliyer 

3 Vadalesa vadamer 15 Kandramdnikam 

4 Sholatesa vadamer 10 A laker 

5 Pratama shdki 17 Vrahacharanam 

6 Enndyirattdr IS Siither 

7 Kanndyirattdr 19 Purdhita pirdmaner 

8 Muvdyirattdr 20 Avideger 

9 F%6r 21 Kdniydler 

10 JHfii*' *6nf^er 22 /'^s^r 

11 Varattumer 2'4 Punenul kanakker 

12 Saveydr 24 Kundakdlager 

The Rev, Philippus De Melho in his D^^cA M'innscript 
entitled '' a Table of the Malabar castes/' (of which 1 have 
been most kindly favoured with an English version by the 
Rev, Joseph Knight of /cyfwa,) has only noticed the three 
following distinctions among the Pirdmaner, from an idea that 
all the other classes are comprised in them : 

1 The race of Agni, or the worshippers of fire, 

2 The race of K\syapa, or the worshippe-s of Siva. 

3 Theraceof BARADWAJA,or the worshippers of Vishnu. 

II The Katriyas constitute the royal tribe of warriors. The 
J?4/^^ or kings, who in primitive times ruled o or the Tamul 
nation in Drivira, were all of this class^ as none but them 
could aspire to regal authority. They divided themselves into 
three distinct branches or stocks, of which the first assumed 
the title o( Sheren, the second that ofShdlen, and the third that 
oi Pdndian^ and they reigned separately over three independ- 
ent kingdoms. The Sherens reigned over the country culled 
Malayd/am, Maleyvar, or Malabar (extending along the 
western coast oi India^ from cape Comorin to the river Chan- 
dragiri), and pretended that they were the descendants of 
Agni Deva, or the Genius of fire; while the Skdlens who 
reigned over the country called Sholamandulam or Cot oaiaudel 
(extending along the west side of the bay oi Bengal, from point 

Tamul Castes. 279 

Kalymere to the months of the Krishna river)^ traced their 
origin to the Sun ; and the P&ndians who rei«:ned over the 
country called Pdndimandalam or Madura (in the souihern 
Camalic), claimed their descent from the Moon. 

According to the opinions of the Singhalese^ and from what 
appears in their writings^ Sinha KuMARi\» or (as he was 
otherwise styled) Vijaya Bahu Kumars, the founder of 
their dynasty, was the son of Shdlen and married the daughter 
of a P(i/irf/aAi, whence the race ol the sun and moon became 
happily united in the sovereiiynty of Ceylon. The Singhalese, 
though forming a disiiiict nation, and differing in their relijiiony 
language, and manners from the Tainuls, had no kin :s ot their 
own race, but of the latter; and according to fjord Valen- 
TiA [a] and Mr Joinvillk [6] " a Simjhaltse raun«ii be king 
of Ceylon ; that \3, Gvcry person born of a Sinyhafese father or 
mother, is excluded Irom the throne." 

The Chakravartisy or kinirs of Jaffna, were ?iUo Kaltiyas, 
sprung from the stock of Sholen by a Pirainen woman, vf 
Manavey in Ramanafhapuram, and hence they took upon 
them the ambiguous title of A'riya Vansain, to signify both 
sides of their parentage, for the word Ariyer is applied inTamul 
equally as an epithet to the Piramaner as to the Sholen, 

The Madeipaliyar, who are an extraordinary race of people 
found in the province of Jaffna alone, properly speakings 
belong to the tribe of Katriya, and may be compared in some 
rci^pect to the Bandaras among the Singhalese. They are 
descended from the offspring of the ChakravartieSf not by 
their queen consorts, but by the ladies of their harems* Re- 
specting th 3 etymology of the word Madeipaliyar^ the people 
universally are mueh di\idcd. The Velaler, through motives of 
jealousy, derive it rr4)m the term MadeipaH, or kitchen, where 
they say it was the duty of the mothers of the Madeipaliyar to 
attend ; but accordiuic to the Madeipaliyar, there name is 
derived from the word Madappam, which is an epithet gene- 

[«] Lord Valentia*g Trayels, voL i, p. 279 \b\ Asiatic Researches, vol, ?iL p. 4^. 

230 Tamul Castes. 

rally applied by the Tamals to any village that has the 
presidency over five hundred smaller ones; their ancestors 
having been the chieftains or such villages in former times* 

I IT, The Vaisyas compose the nobility of the land, and 
according to the classification made by the Rev. Father 
J. Beschi, on the authority of ViRA Mandalavbn and 
other ancient lexicographers, they are divided into three dis- 
tinct tribes or castes ; viz. 

1 Tufia Vahyns, or Merchants. 

2 Pit Vaisyits, or Husbandmen. 
8. Ko Vaisyas, or Herdsmen. 

The Tana Vaisyas are commonly called Chetties, and the 
following are the names of the various small tribes into ^hicb 
they are subdiv ided : 

1 Chetties 5 Patturi'Ulkdra Chetties 

2 Velan Chetties 6 Sittaktu Chetties 

3 Kavery Chetties 7 i^holapuratu Chetties 

4 Komely Chetties 

The Pit Vaisyas arc commonly called Velaler from the 
Velame, or cultivation, in which they are occupied ; and the 
names of the subdivisions of this tribe are in order as follows ; 

1 Karakatu Velaler 9 Savala Velaler 

2 Choliya VeWer 10 Ratti 

3 Kodikal Velaler 11 tsattampddi 

4 Tuluva Velaler 12 Agambadiyar 

5 Paudarattar 13 Maraver 

6 Nynar 14 Kaller 

7 Udyar 15 Paili 

8 Kontaha Velaler 

The Ko Vaisyas are commonly called Idayer, and they 
divide themselves into only three small classes ; 

1 Malei Idayer 2 Valei Mayer 3 Chivizar Idayer 

Tamul Castes. 281 

IV, The Sutrcis, on whom devolve all the lower offices of life, 
are bound to serve the precedinjj; three clas^ses of Vaisyas 
during their public ceremonies, whether of a joyful or mournful 
nature, and are incapable of rai&ing themselves to any superior 

Before I proceed to give a list of the several subdivisions or 
classes of the Sutras, I have to observe, that on examination 
many of these classes appear to have originatt;d from the 
intermarriages of the original tribes time beyond memory, and 
were divided into separate castes protrressively. I'he parti- 
culars are enumerated and recorded in the Satipeda Nul 
D'hariniU'purana, Jatimala, Sut'ha Sangita^ and otht r works, 
and persons desirous of acquiring information upon the subject 
may refer to them. 

The Sutras are distinguished by Mr. IVIrlho into two 
separate branches or orders, the one iiiclndini^ all the tribes of 
domestic servants, Kudimakkel; and the oiber a.l the tribes of 
town servants. 

The domestic servants are eighteen in number, and are 
arranged as follows : 

1 Navider, Barbers 

2 Oacher, Heralds who announce weddingrs and deaths 

3 Kaller, Blacksmiths . These five classes are com- 

4 Ta^far, Goldsmiths /monly denominated Kam^ 

5 £a/mar,* Brass founders ^maZ/er, i, e. craftsmen, and 

6 Ta^cAfr, Carpenters \ have the title oi' A ssary arX' 

7 Sipper, Masons nexed to their proper names. 

8 Valayer, Game keepers 

9 Paner, Tailors 

10 Cheku vaniyer. Oil makers 

1 1 Elai vaniyer. Betel venders 

12 Chunambu vaniyer, Lime burners 

13 Kavelpallif Watchmen 

* This tribe is again subdiTided into two classes, one called JTuita Xhnnar, fWna 
ihtat Working the metal by beating it out with a hammer, and the other Vofpu £<mnar$ 
horn tbrfr mtlting and caiting metal in the mould. 

932 Tamul Cosies. 

14 Pumafakarer, those who sell ^arlandd of flowers 

15 VeHhjati^ those who burn dead bodies 
1C» Kttsaver, Poitcrs 

17 Virakndiyan, those who blow Chanks 
I'i Vantiar, Wasbcrmen [a] 

The town servants are in order as follows; 

1 SaluppeVy Woollen drapers 

2 Paravas [6J 

a KareiycLs 

4 Pattanever ^he different tribes of fishcra and 

5 Palli villi I t)<>^^"^^>^* ^"^ which are commonly 
(i Setnpadever ^called kuru kulam; that is^ the p^pgeny 

7 Timiler ^^ ^^^ planet kuru, or Jupiter. 

8 Mukiar 

9 Paramher 

[m] There are four subdivisions among the Vhnnar / viz, 

1 Fei Vannnr, wlio wash for the high castei. 

2 ^Vi^a Fanuar, Mho dye blue cloths. 

3 Chitya Vnnnar, who dye red cloths* 

4 Turumba Fannnrj who wash for the low castea. 

[y Tn tlie irythologxil origin of the Tamul race X\\v Paravas or as claftsicaYly spelt 
ParaUhavns. are fabled to have sprung from the sutcM pool c;.lle(! SaravananX the same 
time with tht^ ; od Sktnda swami, and to have been nurse 1 by the constellation Kartikeu 
In the Mahn BhanUa and other Puranis, the name of Paratthavns occurs in various 
places, and we are inforined that about tiie period of ti)e reigii of Santanl', one of the 
kings of t!ie lunar rice who kept his court at Hnstinapuri, the coasts along the bai.kfl 
of the river Vimwia were inhabite i by people of this tribe« 

The Pnraifus are divided into tliirteen classes very little differing from each oth&Cp 


The first class — chiefly headmen, who bear the title of «* Don " granted to tbem 

from Porlusnlt and are distinguished from the rest by tlieir wearing a gold chain, and 

crofs abojt their neck 

The second class are dealers in cloth, and intermarry with none but the preceding 

The third class are Divers for coral. 

The fourth c ass, are Mariners, or Sai'ors, who serve in Sloops and Barksi 

The fifih class, are divers for Pearl Oysters. 

The s<xt|i class are divers tor Chaiiks 

The seventii class are employed in packing up cloth for carriage. 

The eighth class are fishers, who catch Tortoises. 

The ninth Ciast ara fisiiersy who catch Porpoi«e8«' 

Tamul Castes. 2S3 

10 Vader^ Huntsmen 

11 Muchchiyer, Painters 

12 Kuraver, Basket makers 

13 Irukr, Woodmen 
1 1 Aripper, Sifters 

15 Ureikarer, Scabbard makers 

16 Maruttuver, Medical practitioners 

17 Taiher, Stage players 

18 Kalayer, Rope dancers 

19 Ondipili, Snake dancers 

20 Yalparter, Lyrists 

91 Parikulattar, Horse grooms 

24 Chandar [c] 1 The different tribes of people employ- 

25 Kad^yer >ed in distilling toddy and in manufac- 

26 Natawer S turing; coarse sugar* 

27 JEkluver, Arrack distillers or brewers 

28 Chayekarer, Dyers 

SI Uppalaver^ Salt makers 

The tenth diss are fi<Jiers, who catch sharks and other fish. 

The eleventh class are Palanquin bearers. 
. The twelfU) class are Peons, or soldiers, who attend on the person of the chief. 

The thirteenth class are fishers who catch crabs. 

The ch ef of the Paravas resides at Tuiecorynt and under the Dutch government he 
enjoyed many important privileges witli the rank and title of prince. 

[c\ The original country of the Chandar or Shanar is said to have been Senkuvalei 
Nadu* They are subdivided into seven classes ; viz. 

1 Veian chanar,or husbandmen. 

2 Kdtpura chanar, or dealers in small wares. 

3 Kalla chanar, or potters* 

4 Eeku chanar, or bullock drivers. 

5 Tennamatte chanar j or toddy drawers from Cocoanut trees. 

6 PanenuUte chanar, or toddy drawers from Palmyra trees. 

7 PaUavaraye chanar, or palanquin bearers. 

2 H 

2»1 Tamul Castes. 

32 Seder 

3*4 KoHyer V ^^^ ^'iff^'rrnt tribes of weavers, inclading 
3.i Kaiicohr C'^^^^^ ^^^ ^'^'*^^' ciders. 
3tt ^aliyer 

3 ' Koviyer, Slaves of the higher order 
3s Marater, Makers of.dry measures 
ID Paivaniyer, Mat maker*) 
40 (JInviyar, Palaiiquin bearers 
4L FrtZ/«rer, Suotb.-^aycMs 

42 Chakiliyer f oKocmakcrs 

43 .Seminar j ^"«c"i*^»-^'^ 

44 Parrayer, Tom torn beaters 

45 Palhr, PIcughmeD of the lower order. 

Bc«^idcs the foresoinor divisions and subdivisions into tribes 
and castes, the Tamul nation in general is divided into two 
factions, di nominated Vafang kaiqerox ri^ht hand castes, and 
Idnny kahjer or lofi hand castes: the former comprising^ ail the 
aprriculcural tribes, and (he latter all the trading and manufac- 
turin^r tribes. Ti ese parties are stated to have originated 
in the time of a certain king of Solafnanddalam, and are kept 
up till this day. They have often been ihe cause of bloodshed, 
in their vindicating, with a fanatical fury, the privileges and 
prerogatives of their respective castes. 



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lililllllllltl liJt 


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H^^vins: in the preceding Essay given a correct classification 
of (he various castes which constitnte the Taninl nation, my 
present oLjt ct is, o delineate the diflferent ceremonies observ- 
ed amongst them. My information on the subject being chieily 
derived from personal observation, made in the district of 
Putlam and Calpe^tyn, I cannot presume to assert that the 
ceremonies, of which a description is here attempted, are 
universally practised throughout the island, or on the continent 
of India; for, although they may coincide in the principal or 
leading rites, the subordinate parts commonly vary according 
to persons and places. 

The celebration both of marriaire and funeral ceremonies is 
considered by the Tamvls as a matter of great importance, 
and they generally lavish considerable sums of money in 
distinguishing such occasions. Besides these two particular 
rites, they have several lesser ones which are observed with 
equal minuteness, and ostentatious displiy. 1 shall first 
endeavour to pariicularize the rites of marriage as observed by 
them, and then proceed with the rest in due order. 

Marriage, in classical Tamul, is called " Vivdham," from the 
San.skrit " Vivaha ;'* but this term is used only among the 
higher orders, the word iti more general use is " kaliyanam" 
implying " convivialiti/.'' Proposals of marriage are usually 
made by the parents of the parties wishing to be united : when 
these are assented to, they firs>t ascertain from a Brahmin th« 

?40 Ceremomes qf the Tamni 

day which will be mist propitious for i-s consnmmafioii 
according to the rules (»f astruL^gy, by which their actions are 
inTjriabiy resiiltted ia matters of m »inerit ; hence, as it re- 
girds the cereni'.iny of niarriui^e, the month ilrfi, which answers 
to part of our Jul> and Aoiiust, is considered a very inauspi- 
cious period, and consequently no mariiages are ever celebra- 
ttd during that time. 

The lathers of both parties being a^nred of an anspicioos 
hour invite their fr>cnds and relations, and commence erect- 
ing a panda/ or booth in front of their respective dwellines. 
In raising these pandals dispntes often arise touching the 
number of kals, or poles, required to support the horizontal 
roof, as none but those of distinguished rank are entitled to 
twenty one. The erection of the first pole on the north east 
side is accoiApanied by many superstitious observances. Be- 
fore it is fixed in the ground it is besmeared with pulverized 
Sanders and turmeric, and the top ornamented with a number 
of Mango leaves and pieces of silk ; and when about to be put 
into the hole destined to receive it, they throw in small bits 
of gold, coral, and pearls, together with a chank, [a] and some 
cocoaiiut milk. When the pandal is complete, thej' proceed 
to the Modliar, the headman of the district, with nine trays 
of &e/e/ leaves and areita. nuts, arranged one upon the other, 
and decently covered with a white cloth, and presenting them 
to him, obtain his permission in writing for their washerman 
to hang the pandals with white cloth, both inside and out ; or 
inside only, as the rank and condition of the parties allow. 
Having thus obtained the sanction of the Modliar they 
dispatch a party of their friends into the country to announce 
the intended marriage to the people, by presenting them also 
with divers trays o[ betel leaves, Ctilculated according to their 
rank and caste. While this is in progress, the pandal is hung 


[a\ The ckank or conch shell haying nine valves or foldings, is considered br the 
votaries of Vishnu as representing his nine avatars or incarnations, and on that account 
is perforated and used by them as a trumpet at their rehgious performanc^a. 

CeremonieM of the Tamul Castes^ 241 

with white cloth^ and adorned with the cocoanut blossoms 
and younsr leaves, &c. 

But beside^=i the pandal just described, they erect triumphal 
arches near their dwellings, adorning them with the leares of 
the cocoanut tree, and fix two rows of the stems of plantain 
trees with laiups on their tops, forming a street from the door 
of their habitation to the pandal \ which rude display has far 
from an unpleasing effect even on the more refined taste of a 
European. In the centre of the pandal erected at the dwell- 
ing of the bride an extra pole is fixed, called Arasanikal, or 
the Udy pole ; and near it is raised a small altar of earth, on 
which is placed a baU of cow dung ornamented with kusa [6] 
grass, to represent Pulliar, the deity who is supposed to 
preside over these rites, as Janus was among the Romans. 
In front of the Arasanikal a quadrangular pit is dug, and the 
inside of it besmeared with cow dung for the purpose of 
kindling the Hamam, or sacrificial fire. On the edge of the pit 
is fixed a serpent formed of clay, in an erect posture, and 
before it aro placed three painted pots, piled one upon the 
other, having on the top a cocoanut streaked With turmeric, 
and a lamp burning near them. When every necessary pre- 
paration is completed the bride's father intimates it to the 
bridegroom, who proceeds to her dwelling with the Tali or 
wedding ring, and the kure or apparel, which are borne before 
him by a servant maid, either in a box or on a salver, attend- 
ed by his friends and relations. 

If the bridegroom be a person of superior rank, or descend- 
ed from a headmao of distinction, the washermen spread 
white cloth along the road for him to walk upon ; two others 
fan him with chamarams, [c] while four persons hold a cano- 
py over his head ; the musicians following with their music ; 
two barbers blowing chanks; dancing girls moving in measure ; 

[6] Poa cynotnroidei. Kotn. 
[c] The chamarm or chown is • whisk made ©f the uU •£ the *« grwwknt. 

2 I 


218 Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. 

and a number of boys carrying lighted flambeaus, white nm* 
brellas and flasfs, and oilier^ exhibiting fireworks ; forming 
altogether a most medley but still imposing group. 

As soon as the bridegroom is seen approaching, the bride's 
father goes out uith a select party of friends to welcome him, 
sprinkling rone water on him ; and when he arrires, the bride 
(nho has previously been bathed, and adorned in splendid 
apparel, and richly ornamented with jewds) is ushered into 
the pandal, and they both take their seats en cushions placed 
near the Arcisanikal, keeping their faces directed towards the 
east, by which they intend some compliment to the glorious 
orb of day. When the bride and bridegroom are thus seated, 
the guests also take their respective places, and the Brahmin 
ignites the sacrificial fire, occasionally throwing into it hand- 
fuls of each sort of fine grain, and a number of dried sprigs 
of the trees All, \d] Arasu, [«] Itti, [/] Attiy [gr] JUd, [A] Ka^ 
runkalif [/] together with the kusa grass and Nayuruvi [il 
herb, also pouring into it drops of clarified butter one hun- 
dred and eight times, at different intervals ; reciting each time 
a text from the vada, and a series of short orisons ; the inden- 
tion of which is, to invoke the deities to accept of the sacrifice 
thus ofiered, and to endow the couple about to be married 
with happiness and prosperity. The tali is afterwards placed 
on a salver, and handed round to the guests to be touched 
separately and successively by each of them; and when that 
is done, it is placed before the bridegroom, who hangs it round 
the neck of the bride, during which act the Brahmin divides 
the cocoauttt, which lay on the painted pot, into two equaL 
parts, and pronounces a benediction, while the barber sounds 
the chank, and the musicians play on their instruments with- 
out intermission. 

[d] Ficus benghalcnsis. [e] Ficus religiota, [ /] A variety of the sacred fkgm 
Ig] Ficut udumbara. [A] llagifera indica. 

[tj Diospyrot ebenum* [k] Caraliabo. 

Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. S48 

When the abore ceremony is ended, the rite called Pani^ 
graham is performed by the Brahmin^ which is that of joiningr 
the hands of the two, painting a pottu or full moon on their 
foreheads with pulverized sander wood and the sacrificial 
ashes, and making them circumambulate the fire three times, 
occasionally throwing into it handfuls of paddy mixed with 
flowers, &c«, as they pass. During this latter observance their 
hands are clasped together in an adoring attitude towards the 
'element. These circumvolutions having ceased, the Brahmin 
recites the following sentence, " The sun and moon, this fire, 
and the three hundred and thirty three millions of gods, are 

witness, that , the son of , now gives his daughter 

■ , as tvife to , who is the son of ." At this 

istageofthe proceedings the bride's father formally gives his 
daughter to her husband, and repeats with the Brahmin the 
above declaration, which concludes the ceremony. 

When a marriage has been thus solemnized, the bride 
stands on a stone with the point of her right foot, while the 
bridegroom points out to her, through an aperture made in the 
roof or the pandal, the constellation Arundhati, as an emblem 
of matrimonial virtue. The last named ceremony is some- 
times performed on the fourth day after marriage, but it is 
contrary to the rules laid down in their ritual laws. When 
the newly married pair are about to withdraw, the parents 
and rel itious besprinkle them with turmeric water impregna- 
ted with kusa grass, the inteution of which is to protect them 
from all kinds of witchcraft, but more particularly from the 
fascination of the eyes. The relations and friends then 
pronounce a blessing on them, wishing them a numerous 
progeny, in the folio wing words : " You shall flourish like the 
Banian tree, and take your root like the Knsa grass, you 
shall shoot up like the Bamboo, and live without end*' [I] 

[I] How otarly does this benediction agree with the subjoined, (Psalm cxxviii.) 
fomiing part of the Marriage Service of the Church of England. *« Thy wife shall be 
MM the fruit ful vine upon the waUs of thine house ; thy children like the olive branchee 
woynd about thy table.** 

24:4 Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. 

After this, they are conducted into the marriage chamber 
and the assembly breaks up^ not however without partaking 
of an entertainment or masticating betels and besmearing 
their breasts with pulverized sandcr wood. On the foarth 
day after the consummation of the marriage, a whimsical 
ceremony called Nalan chadanaoe is invariably observed. The 
newly married couple are led in procession to a well, where 
the husband stands with one end of the wife's cloth about his 
loins and she with the other; they then pour water on both 
their heads, after sprinkling them profusely with the juice of 
turmeric. This is however scarcely worthy of notice* and I 
have remarked it only because it has never been mentioned 
by any European writer. 

The marriage ceremonies already described, chiefly relate 
to the heathen Chetties and Velaler, for the Christian portion 
of those castes never observe any part of them, except the 
hanging of the tali round the bride's neck, which they also 
consider essential to the union, similar to the custom of pre- 
senting a ring to the bride in the solemnization of matrimony 
among Europeans. 

The Kammaler, or tribe of artificers, very nearly follow the 
Chetties and Velaler in their ceremonies, but the Karreas, 
or fishers, differ very materially ; for they observe three difier- 
ent forms of marriage^ in which they are not scrupulous ; and 
as I only design to mark the existing differences, I hope to be 
pardoned the narration of what is evidently the result of 
lax morals. 

The first, called Mdleimanam, is performed by the bride- 
groom's sister simply hanging the tali round the neck of the 
intended bride, after decking her person with wreaths of 
certain flowers, and anointing her with sweet odours. When 
thus married, if either party disagree or do not wish tp live 
together, they may pari after the payment of a fine of twenty 
five rixdoUars to the temple, by the party who desires a 

The second is called Siru tali, which is nothing more than 

Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes, 245 

hanging the tali as aforesaid^ without any ceremonies what- 
ever ; and in this case the party desiring to be divorced is 
obliged to pay a fine of twelve rixdollars and six fanams to 
the temple. 

The third is called Manjepusel, viz, contracting the marri- 
age without even hanging the tali, the bridegroom's sister 
merely besmearing the bride's garment with pulverized turme* 
ric ; and in this case the party who wishes to be divorced is 
onJy obliged to pay a fine of six rixdollars and three fanams 
to the temple. 

The Paravas, who are all Christians, differ so little in 
their ceremonies from the other castes as to claim no particu- 
lar notice, with the exception of a very remarkable custom 
which they observe at their wedding suppers. It is, that if 
a person of inferior rank, or who may have lost the privileges 
of his caste by infringing their rules, should happen to join 
the assembly, and when the others sit down to the meal he 
presume to take a seat, the barber, who is in attendance, 
without saying a word to him or any other person, immedi- 
ately puts out all the lights and turns out the daring intruder, 
without allowing any of the persons assembled to recognize 
him who has been thus dismissed from their society. 

Before I close my description of the various marriage 
ceremonies, and proceed to notice others, I must observe that 
among the heathens the emblem on the circular piece of gold, 
appended to the string of the tali, represents the proboscis 
and pendant belly of Pullyar or ganesa ; but that exhibited 
by the Christians, with very few exceptions, represents a dove, 
implying the descent of the deity in that form on the occasion 
of our Saviour's baptism in the river Jordan. 

There is a very peculiar custom observed among the 
Tamuls respecting the male sex, who are not allowed to shave 
their beards from the time they first appear until the ceremo- 
ny of what is termed " urumalaattu or talachila kattu/' i. e, 
" binding the head cloth," has been performed ; and as there 
is some expense attending it, many are constrained to retain 

216 Ceremonies of the Tamul CasteSp 

their beards until their circumstances will admit of the 
expense necessarily incurred ; for to be deprived of the cere- 
mony is considered the greatest disgrace that could befal a 
man. Wben therefore a day has been appointed for the per- 
formance of this custom^ the parents of the person to be shaved 
erect a large pandal before their house, and after obtaining 
the permission of the Modliar (as in cases of marriage), have it 
lined \iith white cloth, and tastefully ornamented with greea 
leaves and flowers ; this done they send some person to invite 
(he inhabitants of their neighbourhood, by presenting them 
with betel; and on arriving at the pandal they seat them- 
selves ill regular order as already designed for them. The 
youth during this period remaining in his ordinary attire, is 
now brought to the pandal and seated in the midst of the 
assembly, having a cup of milk placed before him* The 
barber who is to operate then makes a low bow [m] to the 
assembly, and clasping his hands to bis breast in a humble 
manner, demands of the chief who presides on the occa- 
sion, if he may be permitted to perform his office. Upon 
his signifying an assent, he takes some milk from the cup, and 
anointing the head with it, slowly performs the operation. 
During the time that the barber is thus employed, every one 
of the guests throws a piece of money into the cup, which is 
the barber's exclusive perquisite. 

The shaving operation being concluded the whole assembly 
rise and conduct the young man in procession to a well, 
carrying a canopy of white cloth over his person, and spread- 
ing cloth for him to walk upon all the way, while the torn torn 
beaters fill the air with their discordant music. The newly 
shaved person then bathes his body and arrays himself in 
garments which are now splendid ; he is then conducted back to 

[w") Abbe DuboJs remarks *< that this sign of rererence is not confined to the Hin- 
floo, but is common to several other nationg of Asia ; which is confirmed by th« 
most ancient of all books— tlie Bible, where this extraordinary mark of revei«nce it 
by the name of adoration, even when it is applied to mere mortali*** Dt* 
of India, p. 28. 

Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. 247 

the pandal in the same manner as when he left; and on 
retaking his seat, the Talachila, or head cloth, is placed on 
a salver and handed round that each of the guests may touch 
it; after which the chief takes it up, and pronouncing a blessing, 
winds it round the head of the youth, who rises and returns 
thanks to the assembly, saluting them with a low bow. The 
whole party then sit down to an entertainment, at the conclu- 
sion of which they severally make a small present to the 
young man, as for instance a shawl, or some thing equally 


In like manner the Tamuls celebrate the period when their 
daughters become marriagable. The girl is :«onfined for 
seven days and not allowed to be seen. She is then bathed, 
on which occasion an entertainment is given, consisting chiefly 
of rice cakes streaked with turmeric to mark the event; and 
this takes place under a pandal lined with white cloth. While 
the girl is bathing the women in attendance perform many 
whimsical ceremonies, the intention of which is to protect her 
from enchantment, and they subsequently sprinkle each other 
with turmeric water. 

The Christian Tamuls do not observe any of these mystical 
ceremonies ; or if they do, they are at much pains to conceal 
it from their priests, who, though not armed with inquisitorial 
power, have their methods of punishment, either by loading 
them with large crosses, or by placing crowns of thorns on 
their heads during the celebration of mass in their chapels. 

The Tamuls also have a particular ceremony for the purifi* 
cation of women after childbirth, which Is performed by ar 
Brahmin ; and which, though it has no relation to the church-* 
ing of women among Christians, yet still bears some rcsem-* 
blance to the ancient practice of purification among the Jews. 

There may also be traced another trait in the lamul charae-* 
ter as bearing some resemblance to the Jews, when they 
censured our Saviour for eating with publicans and sinners ; 
it is, that none ot high distinction will sit and eat with those 
of low extraction, unless they previously purchase a little X9 
do 90f which is performed by the following ceremony \-^ 

248 Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. 

The individual desiring to be equalized with a higher class, 
must first signify bis wishes to the chiefs and leaders of his 
caste, and upon their assurance that no impediment will be 
made thereto, he raises a panda! and decorates it with white 
cloth. He then personally waits upon every one whom he 
considers necessary to be present at this feast, and invites 
them severally to his pandal, where he first undergoes the 
ceremony of shaving and tying the head cloth, and where a 
sumptuous entertainment then awaits them, at which he him- 
self presides. In some instances the individual is obliged to 
pay a sum of money to the temple, and also to make suitable 
presents to Us respective guests ; but this is not always the 
case. When a man has been thus publicly equalized there 
can be no objection to his associating with any person of his 
caste. It must be observed however that this practice is con- 
fined chiefly to the inferior classes, as instances of this nature 
are very rare among the others. 

Having endeavoured in the preceding pages to describe 
certain festivities attendant on joyous occasions, I shall now 
attempt to represent those ceremonies observed on mournful 
ones ; that as they are the last rites which a man has to per- 
form to his fellow creature, so it may be the concluding 
paragraph in this essay. 

As soon as it is ascertained that life is extinct, the relations 
of the deceased person erect a pandal before the house upon 
four poles, and the washerman bangs it with white cloth ; the 
barber blows a chank to announce the event to the village ; 
and the friends and neighbours are then invited by verbal mes- 
sages to the faneral pandal. When* the people are assembled 
they bring out the corpse and pour three jars of water over 
it, rubbing on the bead some gingely \n] oil and expressed 
illippe [o] seeds. After the act of ablution is thus performed 
the body is habited in a clean garment, and decked with 
wreaths of fragrant flowers, and the nearest relation of the 

[n] Scfamum indica. [0J Bania loDgifoUa« 

Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes* 249 

deceased placin<; a piece of muslin over the mouth of the 
corpse, they each cast on it^ according to seniority, a tew 
grains of rice, and a challiy which is the perquisite of the 
barber who attends at the funeral. The corpse is then placed 
in the centre of the pandal^ raised on an elevation, when the 
wife or son of the deceased performs the last peculiar rite of 
^'breaking the jar;" which is, that one of the beforenamed 
relatives brings from the house a jar of water, carrsringit on 
the shoulder, and bearing a lighted wick in one hand ; and after 
making a circuit three times round the body, the jar is broken by 
suffering it gently to fall down, and the lighted wick is extin- 
guished at the same moment. This ceremony is sometimes 
performed at the place of burning, but most frequently in the 
bouse, particularly if the person be a female ; who, according 
to the rules of decorum as observed by them, could not be 
allowed to accompany the corpse to the place assigned for its 
last destination. After the jar is broken, the corpse is laid on 
a bier made of cocoanut branches, decorated with flowers^ 
and carried to the jungle upon men's shoulders, under a 
canopy of white cloth, attended by a number of persons, the 
barber in particular, who sounds the chank all the way« When 
the procession reaches the appointed place, a clean spot is 
selected, where, piling up a number of billets of dried wood 
they lay the corpse on the top, and pouring a jar of clarified 
butter on it, set fire to the pile, which soon reduces the whole 
to ashes. The same ceremonies are observed at burials; for 
the rite of cremation is denied to a woman who dies in child- 
bed, as well as to childr^en under the age of puberty^ After 
attending the last rites of cremation or sepulture, each person 
must .wash his body, and purify himself before entering a 
house, or partaking of any food ; and in the observance of this 
particular they very much resemble the Jews, amonrg whom 
^^ when a man dietb in a tent, all that come into the tent, and 
all that is in the tent'' are considered ^* unclean seven days." 

The second day after the burning, the son and other near 
relations of the deceased proceed to the spot for the purpose 

2 k 

250 Ctremonies of the Tamul Castes* 

of making oblations of different kinds of roasted grain, dressed 
on the .spot, and of dividing a cocoanat into equal parts, which 
is termed ** kadeitttkiratu/' This being concluded, they gather 
up the a:^bes ot the luneral pile, and putting them in a copper 
vessel place it on thi) head of the nearest akin ; they \hen 
depart in solemn procession to some tank or lake, and throw 
them into it. 

At the expiration of forty days, or uhenevcr it suits the 
convenience oi the party, it is incumbent on the same relative 
to apply to the Brahmin, and have the obsequies called 
** karmandiram*' pet formed to his manes. It is as follows: — A 
pandal is erected in a solitary garden upon four poles, decor- 
ated with white cloth, green boughs, and flowers. Under 
this pandal the Brahmin selects a level space, besmearing it 
with cow-dung, and forming squares on it, similan to a chess 
table, with various coloured powders. Nine copper vessels 
called chemboo, piled one over the other and wound round 
with silk are placed near these squares, and a cocoanut 
streaked with turmeric is laid on the top of the upper vessel. 
After the vessels are thus arranged, the Brahmin makes an 
effigy of kusa grass and places it on a bier of the same 
material: all of which being concluded, the relations bring 
out from the house of the deceased a triangular piece of brick, 
which has been consecrated to the deceased on the night 
preceding, under a canopy of white cloth, accompanied by 
music of all sorts, chanks, tom toms, &c., and place that also 
near the squares. A wooden mortar and pestle is next put 
at the entrance of the pandal, which some one of the relations 
beats at intervals during the whole period of this external 
form of their religion. The son, or any one else upon whom 
the conducting of this ceremony has devolved, has a string 
put across his shoulders, and wears a ring of kusa grass on the 
little finder of his right hand ; neither of which he can remove 
until every thing is concluded, as they are considered sym- 
bols of his having bound himself by oath to conduct them. 
When all these preliminaries are adjusted, the Brahmin 

Ceremonies of the Tamul Castes. 251 

kindles the sacrificial fire in a manner similar to that which 
is practised on occasions of marriage^ and after making 
oblations of rice mixed with milk^ curds and butter^ the effigy 
is burnt, and the ashes carefully gathered up and thrown into 
a tank. They then return to the pandal, and forming a 
procession convey the piece of brick already mentioned to a 
river, or any running water> and there throw it in ; after 
which they immerse themselves in the same water once or 
twice, and return to their respective dwellings in their wet 






or THB 


The several cercmoniefi and exteraal obsenrances of 
religion piartised ly the differriit castes of Tamttls having 
been made the subject ol the preceding E^ssay^ my present inten- 
tion is to particulaiise those nhich are peculiar to the Jfoors, 
as lar as they have lonie within the reach ol my obscivation; 
and a?so to note the sti iking similarity they brar to the 
ceremonies of the Jews. I shall first, however, offer a few 
preliminaiy remarks on their origin, and on the etymology of 
the vaiious epithets by which they are commonly designated 
and distiujruished among other tribes of natives. 

We have no authentic records extant respecting the origin 
of the Moors, and therefore it is not po.'.sible to trace it with 
accuracy. What has l)een offered on the subject by European 
writers, appears to have its foundation in nothing but the 
vague, and often distoited, traditions circulated amon<jf the 
natives themselves. According to one of these traditionary 
accounts, the Moors who reside on the coast and in the interior 
parts of Ceylon, equally with those on the Coromandel coast, 
are descended from a tribe o{ Arabs, of the posterity of Has^ 
hem, who were expelled from Arabia by their prophet Mo- 
hammed, as a punishment for their pusi;lanimous conduct in 
one of the battles in which he was engaged against the parti- 
zans of Abu Jahbel, and who afterwards founded a colony 
at Kaiilpatnam (the ColcUis mentioned in the Periplus of the 

The Moors of Ceylon, 255 

Erythrean sea), and from thence moved in successive emigra* 
tions towards this island^ and along the borders of the penin- 
sula of Hindoostan as far as Rameswaram. 

In the Tamul language the Moors are usually denominated 
by the term Sonaher, and they do not object to it. If this 
should be their proper appellation^ it completely overturns 
the preceding idea of their Arabic origin ; because it can 
hardly be reconciled to a passage in the Maha Bharata (the 
date*of which the learned orientalist Wilford fixes at 
3200 years before Christ), where the Sonaher are mentioned 
as then existing in Hindoostan, and serving in the armies of 
the contending princes ; besides which, in the classification of 
the several tribes of Hindoos in the Nigandu Salamam, they 
occupy the thirty seventh place in alphabi tical order. Inde- 
pendently of the two 1 tter inferences, drawn from works of 
no little authority, their cast of features and modes of life, 
added to the circumstance of their speaking no other langu- 
age than the Tamul, will sufficiently prove their having origi- 
nated from the latter nation, or, at any rate^ from a branch of 
them ; and I should suppose that by mingling afterwards with 
the Arabs, Moguls, and Patans by intermarriages, they 
gradually degenerated from the parent stock, and became 
constituted into a separate and distinct body by adopting 
the tenets of Islamism. 

The Singhalese impose on the Moors the title of Mardk* 
kalaya or boatmen, which is very probably derived either 
from the circumstance of having had formerly at their com- 
mand the export of the commodities of Ceylon, or from their 
crossing over to the island in boats from the opposite shore 
when they made their settlement. 

Mr. Boyd, one of the reputed authors of the letters of 
Junius, in his account of the embassy to the court oi Kandy, 
describes the Moors under the name of Chalias; and Sir 
Alkxander Johnston designates them by the appellation 
of Lubbes. These epithets are, however, not admissible ; for 
the former is only confined to a particular sect among them 

256 The Moors of Cey^m. 

who are rather of aa inferior g^ade, aad the latter to the 
priests iivho officiate in their temples ; and also as an 
honorary affix to the proper nnmes of some of their chief men. 

Before quitting the subject of their origin, 1 must add, that 
the title Moor or Moro appears to be equally inapplicable to 
this race, for Dr. Guthrie in his Geographical Grammar 
states, that this appellation was originally bestowed on the 
Saracens who invaded Spain ; the greater part of them having 
come from Mauritania in Africa ; though in modem tillies it 
has been rendered a common epithet for Mohammedans of 
all sects and countries \f ho are settled in Hindoostan and on 
the coast of Barbary. 

Having thas endeavoured to trace the outline of the origin of 
the Muors, as well as their name, I shall now proceed to 
delineate their rites and ceremonies, as already proposed in 
the commencement. 

Among the Moors, the term marriage is usually expressed 
by the Arabic word Kavin and its synanyme tUhkka, and is 
by them considered the most essential of all objects ; they^r» 
therefore taught to look on it as a matter of strict obligation, 
and as a foretaste of the joys of ihe sensual paradise which 
Mohammed has promised to every one of his true followers ; 
and they consequently bestow great attention in the perform- 
ance of the various festive and pompous ceremonies which 
precede and accompany the celebration of the solemn con- 

According to one of the precepts of Mohammed, a man 
who has no means to support a wife, or to pay her dowry, 
cannot enter into the* conjugal state, and in that case he is 


strongly recommended to retire from the world and employ 
himself wholly in exercises of devotion and mortification. He 
however allows children under the age of ten years to enter 
into matrimonial engagements ; but, to the credit of his fol- 
lowers, very few instances of the kind occur; and where they 
do, it is invariably found among the admirers of the enthusi- 
astic opinions of the Imam Abu Hanipa, and the sect deno« 
minated Hanafi, not unlike the voluptuous Epicureans. 

The Moors of Ceylon. 257 

Among most nations of the vi^orld the bridegroom or his 
parents solicit a marriage, but it is somewhat singular^ 
that among the Moors (though it is stated as otherwise in 
the 64th article of their special laws concerning matrimonial 
affairs) the bride, but most commonly her parents, is accus- 
tomed to anticipate it. So when a man has a daughter who 
has attained the period when persons of her sex are usually 
disposed of in marriage, be (often without consulting her in 
the least) fixes his choice on some youth, and sends a deputa- 
tion of his friends to af^certain through them if the parents 
are disposed to meet his wishes. Having satisfied himself 
that the proposal is not likely to be rejected, he proceeds to 
negotiate in person. When the ordinary salutations have been 
interchanged, he informs the young man's father of the pur- 
port of his visit, who inquires what portion he purposes 
giving to his son on account of kaykooly (or present for 
marrying his daughter), and what portion to her for chidanam 
(properly strUdhanam) or dowry. He then names a certain 
sum of kaykooly^ and half as much for chidanam^ besides 
household goods, cattle, and land ; and if these terms are 
approved of, they mutually fix upon a day for the betrothing, 
and separate. 

As the day appointed for betrothing approaches many 
preparations are made by the parents on both sides: the 
father of the future bridegroom invites his friends and relati- 
ons, and the chief of the village to whom he is subject (who is 
entitled Markair), to attend and accompany his son ; accord- 
ingly when the day arrives they assemble, the youth is attired 
in his best apparel and conducted with every mark of dis- 
tinction which his rank and condition will allow, attended by 
music and every demonstration of joyousness, to the house of 
his future bride. As the party approaches the gate of her 
dwelling her father advances (o meet his destined son-in-law 
and sprinkles his clothes with rose-water, which is considered 
as doing respectful and kind honors to him. A party of old 
matrons then come out with a basin of water iofiised with 

2 L 

25S The Moors of CeyUm. 

turmeric, mixed with bits of kusa grass and cotton seeds, and 
whirl it round his head three times ; this is called the ceremonjr 
of alatti, [a] and is supposed to prevent any mischief 
befalling him from the iuridious looks of the populace during 
bis progress. The father then conducts him and bis attend- 
ants into a pandal (previously set up for the purpose in the 
compound, decorated with white cloth and cocoanut blos- 
soms), and makes them all sit down on carpets or mats 
already spread on the ground. When the party have re- 
freshed themselves by masticating betel, some elderly person 
amongst them introduces the subject, and after an infinity of 
questions on both sides, the betrothing takes j^ce, by 
drawing up an indenture, styled Mudira Kaduttam or ''ring 
contract," which is worded as follows : ** In the year of the 
Hegira 1260, and on the 1 1th day of the month of Jamadi* 
lavoalf A, the son of B, of Calpenfyn, consents to take unto 
''him as his spouse, C, daughter of D, of the place aforesaid; 
^* paying her for the portion of her virginity the sum of 200 
*^ ounces of gold of the land of Mis'r [b] as is ordained by the 
''law. And the said D, on these conditions, solemnly pro 
mises to pay him a sum of r>00 Rds. as a free gift, besides one 
house and garden, one shop, two cows, one chest, one 
''lamp, one bowl, one ewer, one rice-stand, [c] one beUl 
"plate, and one jjold ring weighing one pagoda. And of the 
"said sum of 500 Rds. the said A, acknowledges to have 
"received this day 25u lids, in advance. Witnesses, E, head 
"moorman, and F, priest of the temple." Previously to the 
signing of this contract the father of the female brings and 

[a] This is properly speaking a Hindoo ccrenony ; and the obaerrance of it by 
the Mo^tf may be remarked as a proof of their attachment to their original 

[6J The Araiic name for Egypt, corresponding with the MUrahn of the 
Scripture, and Mitra^tCkan of the Puranas. 

[c] A small round table with three feet, a span bigb» on which tbe Moon 
dlace their ricte plate while eating out of it 

The Moors of Ceylon. 259 

places before the assembly, in different trays covered with 
white cloth, the part of the sum alluded to in the contract ; and 
also three pearls, three coral beads, one pagoda, one hundred 
ketel leaves, and an equal quantity of areka nuts cut into 
small slices, together with a gold ring. The Mahalli, or 
priest, takes up the ring, and having held it out to the assem- 
bly that they may severally touch it, as the Tamuls do their 
tali, he puts it on the finger of the bridegroom, uttering at the 
same time the follot^ia^ words, Bismilla hi irrahi man nir 
raheem. ^ In the name of the most merciful God," which is 
responded to by the assembly, as follows: Athumdu lillahi 
rebbil alameen irraheem, iic^ ^'AU praise be to God the 
preserver of the world, the saviour of men,'* &c. The contract 
being signed by the bridegroom and bride's father, is deliver- 
ed to the priest, who is required to file it among the records 
of the temple. Thus the betrothing is accomplished, and th^ 
brides father distributing betel to the assembly, and be- 
smearing their breasts with pulverized sander (which is the 
signal for them to withdraw) they take their leave. 

The custom of paying a sum of money to the bride as the 
price of her virginity is not peculiar to the Moors alone, but 
belongs also to the Jews, among whom it was fixed at 200 
zuzimSy or fifty shekels of silver ; but if the bridegroom's 
circumstances would not admit of this, he accommodated it 
by other means : of this we may adduce instances in Scripture 
from the earliest times, for JAlGOB served fourteen years for 
his two wives (Gen. xxix); David gave 100 foreskins of the 
Philistines for the daughter of Saul (I Sam. xviii. 25); and 
HosBA bought his second wife for fifteen shekels of silrer^ 
and an omer and a half of barley. (Hos. iii. 2). 

To return from this di»:ression, it often happens that 
between the time of betrothing and the solemnization of 
marriage, there elapses a considerable interval ; during 
which the bride's father is obliged to send occasionally some 
trifling present to the bridegroom ; but a short time prior to 
tke marriage he is expected to send a costly one, consisting 

260 The Moors of Ceylm. 

of divers sorts of cakes and coDfectionai and a nmober 
ot balls of sugar, eggs, and plantains, to which is added 100 
betel leaves, 1000 areka nuts, 100 measures of milk, and a 
cup of pulverized snnder. These presents are comuionly 
called *^seer," but the last by way of eminence " Perumseer*' 
They are conveyed in trays borne upon men's heads under a 
canopy of white cloth, and accompanied with tonn toms and 
other sorts of music. If it docs not suit the convenience of 
the bride's father to send these presents he can adjust it by 
paying a sum of money in lieu, but should he neglect to do 
either, such an omission would occasion disputes, and io 
all probability tend ultimately to break off the match. It may 
not be improper to mention here, that in the 66th article of 
their special laws it is stated, that after the betrothing has 
taken place, if the parties disagree and are not willing that 
the union should take place, the presents that have been 
interchanged between them are reciprocally. restored; but this 
is not the case in this part of the country, for the bride is not 
obliged to restore any thing to the bridegroom, even though 
she should have been the cause of the separation ; but on 
the other hund, the bridegroom must restore to her every 
thing he may have received; and if he should have been 
the party disagreeing must make some considerable addi- 
tions besides. 

Although the Moors ridicule their Tamul neighbours for 
consulting the Brahmins regarding propitious days or hours 
for the celebration of particular events, yet they observe as 
nahasy or ominous, several days during the lunar month, 
on which they would never solemnize a marriage, or perform 
any other ceremony whatever. The days thus set apart by 
them, and the reasons they assign for their prescription, are as 
follows : the third day of the moon Adam was expelled from 
Paradise; the fifth, Jonah was swallowed by a whale; the 
thirteenth, Abraham was thrown into the fire; the sixteenth, 
Joseph was lowered into a well ; the twenty first. Job became 
afflicted with disorders ; the twenty fourth, Zachabiah wae 

The Moors of Ceylon. 261 

murdered; and the twenty fifths Mahommed had his front 
tooth broken by a slingf. Their marriages are commonly 
celebrated during the months of January, April, June, August, 
October, and November, excluding from them all the nah(is 
days above specified, [d] 
Previous to the solemnization of marriage, the parents of 
* the parties erect a pandal in their respective dwellings, sup- 
ported upon twenty one poles, more or less, according to their 
own fancy ; but as an even number is considered ominous of 
future evil, they always take care to avoid it. Like the 
Tamuk, they also have a particular pole placed in the east 
comer, called Kanni kal, or '^ virgin pole," and the erection 
of it is attended with many idle ceremonies. It is generally 
well washed, and then besmeared with pulverized sander and 
turmeric, and perfumed with burning incense before it is put 
into the ground ; and when placed in the hole destined to re- 
ceive it, they throw in a piece of gold, a pearl, a coral bead, 
and some paddy y all tied in a piece of silk, together with a 
pot of milk. After the pole has been thus set up, another 
pot of milk is poured on the top of it, in such a manner that 
it shall run down on the floor of the pandal, and by this 
observance they intend to symbolize the future prosperity of 
the intended union. It is thus the prosperous condition of 
CaAaan is expressed in the Scripture, as a land *^ flowing 
with milk and honey." (Josh. v. 6). 

After the setting up of the virgin pole the others are also 
fixed ; and the whole being complete, the pandal is ornament- 
ed with white cloth, cocoanut flowers, green leaves, &c. In 
the pandal at the bride's house a magnificent seat in the 
form of a throne is set up for the bridegroom, which is 
adorned with artificial flowers of various descriptions, and 

\d] " Among the Romans, the kalends, nones, and ides of every month were 
deemed unlucky for the celebration of marr agp, as was also the feast of the 
Par^mtalia, and the whole month of May« The most happy season in every respect 
vat that which followed the ides of Junct*' Vide Chambers's Cyclopedic uad«r the 
•rticle Mtirriage, 

982 The Moors of Ceylon. 

neatly interspersed with tinsel, and other glittering sub- 
stances, presenting a very imposing sight on the bridal 
night These preparatory ceremonies being concluded, a day 
is fixed on which invitations are sent to all the friends and 
relations on both sides ; not confined however to those wh# 
live in the place, but extended to whomsoever may have 
given invitations to theur on similar occasions. The assem- 
bly is first formed iu the pandal at the house of the bride- 
groom, generally about mid-day ; where they are sometimes 
treated with a collation, and where they remain until the 
evening, when the bridegroom is brought into the pandal 
shaved and washed, and in the presence of the assembly is 
attired in his bridal clothes; his outer garment being a 
white gown with long sleeves, reaching from his collar bone 
(where it fits close) to his aiikle ; the waist is confined by a 
richly embroidered sash, iu which is placed on one side a 
silver sword or dagger ; a scarf is loosely thrown over the 
shoulders, and he has a turban on liis head, formed by a 
ribbon worked with gold thread ; in the front is a plate of 
gold with an ornament of the same metal on the right side, 
called mantooli, resemblinti: a corkade, but this latter addi- 
tion is confined to the higher classes. Several chains are 
hung round his neck, and rinirs put upon his fingers ; 
the rims of bis eyelids are marked with black, and his nails 
dyed yellow with an infusion of Marutondi leaves. [«] When 
it has been announced that every thing is ready at the bride's 
house for his reception, he sets out in procession, either on 
horseback, in a palanquin, or such other conveyance as he 
may have the means to afford ; accompanied by all sorts of , 

music, and preceded by a number of white umbrellas, flags, | 

and other insignia of his tribe. Should he in his progress 
pass the house of a relation, the females of the family shout 

[#] Lawionia inermis. The Turkt and Egyptians make use of the powder of the 
leaves of a plant called by boUnists Ligustrum Egyptiucuirif or Alcanna^ to dye their 
nails of a golden-yellow hue ; (vide Chambers*8 Cyclopedia, under the article Alcannm) 
and I suppose the Moti have adopted the use of iiartUondi in the room of the aboTC 

The Moors of Ceylon. S63 

and present him with a cup of bruised plantains and milk, 
(which is very like strawberries and cream) in token of 
respect, besides performing the whimsical ceremony of aldtti, 
already described* As soon as he reaches the street where 
the bride*s house is situated^ a cloth is spread for him to 
walk on, and when be arrives at the pandal the females there 
ai^sembled shout several times, and sometimes the friends of 
the bride's father fire a fea de joie to welcome his arrival. 
Proper seats having been assigned for the bridegroom and his 
friends, the first thing which is done is to cancel the ring 
contract, executed on the occasion of betrothing; and to 
draw up the following in place of it. " In the year of the 
" Hegira 1251, on the 5th day of the month of Rabilawal, 
"A, the son ofB, acknowledges to have this day received 
" from D, the father of C, (whom he this day accepts for bis 
** spouse, by paying her the sum of 200 ounces of gold of the 
*'landof JfiYr, for the portion of her virginity) the balance 
*' due to him from the sum of 500 Rds, which he the said D, 
did promise to pay him on the day of marriage for and on 

account of kaikooly. And the said A, moreover acknow- 
"ledges to have received the lands, goods, and chattels enu- 
•^merated in the ring contract, and he hereby releases the 
''said D, from all further obligations. Witnesses E, head 
"moorman, and F, priest of the temple." 

During the time the men are thus employed the bride 
is preparing her toilet. Her hair is neatly braided in a knot 
behind, adorned with very handsome spri;;8 of gold flowers 
set with precious stones ; and long pins, in the form of an 
arrow, are passed through the knot crossways. She wears 
earrings (like ogelim or circles for the ears, mentioned in 
£zek. xvi. 12) and another ring is passed through the nose 
(Isaiah iii. 21, Prov. xi. 22) set with pearls ; many gold chains 
are suspended round her neck ; her arms are decorated with 
bracelets, her fingers with rings, and her feet and toes with 
divers tinkling silver ornaments. (Is. iii. 18). Her outer 
garment is of silk or embroidered, and envelopes her entirely. 


204 !%€ Moors of CeyUnu 

and ber eyelids and nails are dyed as before mentioped. This 
dress is very becoming, but their females not nsnally being 
seen, the bride remains in an inner apartment with her 
friends and female relatives, totally secluded from the sight 
of the assembly of men without. After the contract is signed 
and delivered to the priest, the latter deputes a person^ who 
stands in such relation to the bride that she need not appear 
veiled before him, to ask her vihether she is contented 
to accept A, the son of B, for the sum of 200 ounces of 
gold, as the portion of her virginity. On her answering in 
the affirmative, the priest makes her father formally declare 
his consent in the hearing of the assembly, without which no 
marriage is legal. The priest and the bridegroom afterwards 
undergo the rite of purification by washing their mouths^ and 
being seated near to each other, the priest rehearses a surai, 
or passage from the Koran, which chiefly expatiates on the 
origin and institution of marriage in the persons of Adam 
and Eve; and on the blessings which attended the earthly 
career of Abraham and Sarah, of Joseph and Sluyha^ of 
Ali and Fatima, from a strict observance of domestic 
virtue ; and lastly counsels the party about to enter into the 
conjugal state, to follow their laudable example. The priest 
then mutters some mystical prayer in the ear of the bride- 
groom, making him repeat it after him, but inaudibly; and at 
the conclusion demands of him three several times whether 
he wishes to marry C, the daughter of D, for the sum of 200 
ounces of gold, as the price of her virginity. jHaving an- 
swered, " Yes I do,'* each time, the priest lays hold of his 
hand, and looking at the assembly declares ^^AHye, the Mtissul- 
mans here assembled, bear witness, that in presence of the 
*^ priest, of E, head moorman, and G and H, chief men of the 
'' place, A, the son of B, has accepted for his lawful spouse C, 
the daughter of D, for the sum of tiOO ounces of gold of the 
land of Mis'r,for the portion of her virginity.'* I n this stage 
of the ceremony the bridegroom rises and salutes the assem- 
bly, who return it either by a compliment or a present of a 

The Moors of Ceylon. 265 

tix\%. The priest then leads the bridegroom into the bride's 
apartment, ani joining their little fins:ers9 pronounces a 
benediction, which the people outside repeat with loud cheers, 
and thus the rite of niarrin^e is concluded ; but a contribution 
of money is made by the guests prior to their separa- 
tion, for the benefit of the bride's father, after which some 
refreshment is usually offered, or a little heteU 

In imitation of the Tamuls, who tie a tali round the necks 
of their brides, the Moors ban^ a ^old string cither on the 
marriage night or some time afterwards, according tO; their 
eonvenience ; this is done by the sister of the bridegroom, after 
he has consecrated it by a solemn imposition of his hands. 

On the seventh or twenty first day after the celebration of 
the marria^re the ceremony of bathinjr is also ohser\ ed, with but 
litttle variation from that of the Tamuh. Prior to the ceremony 
the bridegroom's mother takes to the bride's house a quantity 
of turmeric, a box of s^weet odours, a can of gingely oil,[f j some 
Illippe seeds, [g"] 100 bttel leaves, and lOO areka nuts, with 
a suit of wearing apparel, and leaves thtm there. The bride 
and bridegroom then make their appearance, and sit down by 
each other on a raised scat: he first rises, and dipping his 
finger into the oil anoints her head, and she in return does the 
same to him. This unction having been accomplished, they 
all retire to a room where water has previously been placed in 
different vessels for bathiniry and during the time they are 
bathed the female cousins, on the maternal side, act many 
wild and ridiculous scenes, and thr6w limes and pellets of 
clay at the bridegroom. The bride is then attired io the dress 
brought by her mother-in-law, and they return to the seat in 
the pandal^ where he takei^ some betel, areka nuts, cai^ts, 
pieces of gold coin, &c , and ties them in one corner of his scarf, 
and which he presently unties and throws on his wife's head, 
and takes from her hand the rolls of betel leaves which she 

[/] Seftamumindica^ f^] Bmua longifolift. 

2 M 

266 The Moors of Ceylon. 

This practice of throwing cakes and money somewhat 
resembles that \ihich is observed by the modem Jews, when 
they throw pieces of money mingled viiih wheats which is 
gathered up by the poor. 

The Moors abstain from 6sh diet for a certain period after 
marriage : on the day therefore that by custom they may 
resume it their friends assemble to partake of an entertain* 
meut^ and from this time the ne\^ly married couple become 
independent of their respective parents. 

No ceremonies take place subsequent to the latter mention- 
ed, until the period the woman proves pregnant : but when far 
advanced an entertainment is giveuy at which she is arrayed 
in her ii'eddin<r garments and exposed to view, which is called 
** displaying her jewels*" On the birth of the infant (the ex- 
penses attending which are defrayed by the parents of the 
woman) the females already assembled shout^^if a male seven 
timeSy if a female nine times. When the umbilical cord is cut, 
the midwife wa^ihcs the child (Ezek. xviii. 4.)pronoancing the 
creed Hahi lahd iliatlah Mohammed Resool allah ! " There 
is no other God but God, and Mohammkd is bis prophet/' and 
the relations at this time throw into a basin pieces of money^ 
which are the perquisite of the midwife. 

On the seventh day their children are named ; the father 
gives a name^ which the priest confirms by calling the child 
three times by it, and exclaiming, Allahu akber ! Allahu akher! 
Allahu akber! *' the Lord is exceedingly jjreat," when those 
who are present offer up a prayer of thanksgivings and take 
their leave, f A] 

In the Koran, as explained in the Suhabul Iman, the pa- 
rents are enjoined to have the child's head shaved on this 
cccasiun, and also to make an offering of a camcl^ a ram^ or 
a cock, according; to thrir ability ; which bears a striking affi- 
nity to the rules prescribed to the Jewuh women after child- 
bearinj^. (Lev. xii . i>, 7, 8). 

[&1 ** The Jews give the name at the circumcision, viz. eight days after the birth : 
the Romans to females the same day, and to males on the ninth ; at which time they 
h^lda feast, called nomina/ta.**— iVide Chambers's Cyclopedia, under the article Ifdme* 

The Moors of Ceylon. 267 

Another pccasion on which they make a sort of rejoicing is 
on the 14th day, when the child is invested with arm rings ; and 
when the first teeth appear, cakes, decorated with the kernel 
of the cocoanut cut in the shape of small teeth, are distribu- 
ted. This observance notifies also the time of weaning, and 
may therefore bear some distant resemblance to the feast 
Abraham made on the weaning of his son Isaac. (Gen. 
xxi. 8). 

With a female the next thing to be observed is the boring 
of the ears, and with a male that of circumcision. In the 
former case they set up a pandal, as on other festivals, and 
invite their female friends : the girl is dressed gaily, an J seated 
higher than those assembled, and after having masticated 
betel the operation of boring is performed, and a wire passed 
through the ears. During the operation they make a great noise 
with cymbals and tom toms ; and when concluded, some tri* 
fling present is made to the parents, who distribute a small 
quantity of soaked rice mixed with sugar and the cocoanut 
kernel, or rice simply boiled with milk. 

Among the Moors the men never bore their ears, and there- 
fore Thumbbrg (vol. iv. p. 188). when desoribing ** that their 
ears are commonly decorated with long earrings*' must have 
confotinded them with the Tamuls, among whom, as among the 
Athenians^ it is a mark of nobility to have the ears bored^ or 

According to the ordinance of Mohammbd, a boy ought 
to be circumcised on the eighth day, as among the Jews (Gen. 
xvii. 2 ) ; but they commonly defer the performance of this rite 
to the tenth or eleventh year, and sometimes longer. 

It must be observed that great show attends the perform- 
ance of every thing connected with the native character, \^he- 
ther joyful or otherwise, and that pomp is the first thing thought 
of in the celebration of all that relates to them. In the case of 
circumcision it is announced as a great event; a pando I is 
erected, friends invited, &c. &c., and on the day appointed, the 
head moorman and priest also attend, when the boy is dressed 

g68 The Moors of CeyUm. 

up and placed on an elevated seat, merely to display bis clothes. 
His fir£>t \isit i.s to tiir mosque, to say his prayers, whither be 
IS (aked in procession, undc r a canopy, with such appendages 
of honor and distinction as may l>edue to his rank; he is then 
taken throu<^h the streets in procession, and should be pass the 
bouiise of a relative is regaled ^iih bruised plantains and mUk, 
while the women shout. Tliis perambulation generally takes 
place at night by torch \\^\i\, and as it would be inconvenient 
to circumcise the boy then, it is deferred until the next 
evening, when the same persons assemble, and the operation 
is pert'otmed by a barber. Loud shouts and discordant 
music is continued during the time, so as efiVctually to drown 
any noise the boy may make. A plate bong set before the 
assembly money is collected, which, with the habiliments of 
the boy, become the perquisite of (he i>arber, besides what the 
parents may also give him. No eutertaintnent is provided on 
this occasion, but some days al'terwatds a small repast is 
spread in commemoration of the event, cotisia»tiug chiefly of 
rice piidd'ngs, ^ruel, and stsamum oil. 

The diifi Tcnce that exists between i'^^ Jews and Moorsixx 
the ceremonies attendant on circumcision, appeais chiefly to 
be, that the former observe a vigil on the ni«ht before the 
operation, and that ih< y admit of god fathers and «od-mothers, 
btsidcs which the parent himself sometimes circumcises his 
own ch Id. 

The Miiors also practice many superstitious ceremonies on 
their daiii^hters attaining: the age of puberty; but they so near- 
ly resem!>le those which [ have already described in my Essay 
on the Ceremonies of the Tamuls, that I shall not enter into a 
tedious narration of thtm, but clo^e with a description of 
their funeral observances. 

In the Mohammedan relii^ion it is inculcated as a duty in- 
cumbent on all Mussulmen to bury their dead, and consequent^ 
ly, like the Jews (Tobit i. 20. iii, 9. iv, 17), \\\ y are very punc- 
tual in this res, ect. As soon as a man or worn in departs this 
life, the relations and friends being assembled, join in loud 

The Moors of Ceylon. 269 

lamentations over the deceased ; the women particalarly^ who 
in mournful ditties detail the virtuous qualities and actions 
of the deceased. It would be considered a great misfortune 
not to be bewailed in this manner; and it would appear by 
the Scripture that the Jews also entertained some sucli notion 
regarding it. (Amos v, 16. Jer. ix. 17. Job iii, 8. xvii, 15, Ps. 
liLxvii, 64. Jer. xvj, 4.) When these mournings have abated 
the corpse is made ready for interment, the feet and hands are 
tied together, and the face turned towards the KiblUy or 
temple of Mecca. A lamp is kept constantly burning at 
the head, together uith frankincense, until every prepa- 
ration is completed for removing the corpse to the place 
of inhumation. When a sufficient number of persons have 
assembled to form a funeral procession the body is again 
washed with warm water, about which they pay much atten- 
tion, carefully cleaning the nails, and painting the rims of the 
eyelids with a clay called " Sirma^' said to be brought from 
mount Sinai, and strewing sander wood povider, camphor, and 
rose water on the face, after w hich the y dress it with a cloth 
about the waist, and a long cloak reaching to the toes. If the 
dead person be a male, a turban is put on the head, and the 
body afterwards wrapped in a iarge sheet. It is then placed on 
a bier, covered with white cloth, strewed with flowers and 
green leaves, when it is borne to the mrsque with every append- 
age due to the rank of ti)e deceased, the mourners chanting 
their creed all the w^ay. On reaching the mosque the bier is 
set down on the ground, and the priest repeats a long prayer, 
in which some of the bye-standers join, after which the corpse 
is taken from the bier and lowered into the grave with the 
face downwards : the assembly them recite a priiyer and 
throw earth on the body, as is the custom of Christians, saying 
'* You were taken from the earth, you go to the earthy and you 
shall come out of the earth!* The grave is then filled up, 
being piled in the usual form ; the pc^rson who washed the 
corpse at the house, pours three pots of water over it, and 
places two pieces of plank, with a flag on the top, at each end, 

The Moors of Ceylon. 

throwing over it some slips of Piranda creepers [t], probably 
in imitation of the Jews, who plucking bits \of grass three 
times, and casting it behind them at tha conclusion of tlie 
burial, said, '' They shall flourish like the grass of the earth.*' 
(Ps. Ixxii. 6.) The priest afterwards placing himself at the 
head of the grave, rehearses a series of prayers called Talkim, 
and then the bread which is carried with the funeral processi- 
on is distributed among the poor, (Tobit. iv. 17.) The mourn- 
ers having pronounced the fatiya prepare to return to the 
house, but after advancing seven paces they make a stand, 
and again pronounce the fatiya^ looking towards the place of 
interment. The vessels in which the loaves and incense were 
carried precede the mourners homewards ; which^ when the 
females at the house see, is a signal for them to depart : the 
former having reached the dwelling, the priest again pronoun- 
ces the fatiya, and making a salaam of condolence they all 
return to their houses. 

On the third day the relatives of the deceased invite the 
priest and other oj£cers of the mosque, and having caased 
them to oQer up prayers for the manes of the deceased person 
give them an entertainment, which is repeated on the fifth and 
seventh day likewise. 

On the fortieth day they observe a ceremony called kattam. 
One or more of the relations proceed to the tomb and cover 
it with a white cloth, burning incense near it ; they then send 
a tray of cakes to the mosque, where the priest and a number 
of people have assembled to ofier up prayers for the repose of 
the departed soul ; which being concluded, they all go to the 
house of the deceased, and partake of an entertainment which 
has been already prepared for them. 

The custom of giving repasts after a funeral was common 
among the Jews, and Josephus de Bello (lib. iii* cap. I) relates 
that Archelaus treated the whole people magnificently, after 
he had completed the seventh day's mourning for the king his 

[t] Sinh. Hetressa. 

The Moors of Ceylon. 37 1 

It is not to be supposed that the Moors take no farther no* 
tice of the dead after the conclusion of the ceremonies 1 haye 
before described^ for they entertain the poor on every anni- 
versary of the day thereon the person died^ and also on 
the festival called Vrdt, ^rhicb is held in remembrance of 
the dead. 





•r THB 


Among the yarious tribes of natives who inhabit the differ* 
ent parts of the district of Patlam^ the Mookwas (or as they call 
themselves Mukugevy from Kuga the ferryman mentioned 
in the Ramayana as assisting Rama and his retinue in cross- 
ing the Ganges on their way from Ayodhya) constitute 
a very industrious and peaceable body of subjects. These 
people are partly Mohamedans^ and partly Christians of the 
Roman Catholic persuasion^ and according to their own 
account,— supported however by no kind of evidence, — arc 
originally emigrants from Ayodhva, or some part of Oude 
in Hindoos tan ; but they are ignorant of the period when 
this event occurred. There is a race in Kutch or Kuchchhava, 
lying west of Guzerat, called Mookwanas, which from 
the similarity of the names, may appear to have some relation 
to the Mookwas ; but the striking resemblance of the latter, 
both in their customs and habits, to the Nairs and Mookwas 
en the coast of Malabar, encourages a supposition that they 
originally emanated from one of these two tribes, and renders 
the former hypothesis of their origin unnecessary. 

When the coast of Malabar was overrun by the Moha- 
medans from Arabia, the natives were persecuted with 
the view of causing them to embrace the doctrines of the 
Koran ; in order to avoid wbich the Mookwms transported 
themselves to Ceylon, and establisiied their residence in the 
Malabar provinces* From the information which I have 

2 N 

97S The Mookwas of Ceylan. 

been able to collect, it appears, that the place where the 
Mookwas first landed was Kudremale, whence they emigrated 
to other parts of the Island, and in coarse of time formed 
several settlements. Some time after the arrival of the Moot' 
was in the district, their chieftain named Vbdi Arasen, 
had t> contend \^ith a ri%al called Manika Talbivbn^ who 
then presided over the people denominated Karreyar, and 
possessed a settlement on the south side of the district 
Manika Ta LEI v EN dispatched some of his officefrs to Vedi 
Arasen for the purpose of soliciting his daughter in marri- 
age ; but meeting with a refusal, he collected a considerable 
body of armed men and declared war against the Mookwas^ 
avowing their total destruction. As the Mookwas were at 
that time a very weak and defenceless people^ they concerted 
with the crew of an Ajrab vessel which was then at anchor at 
Kudremale, and with their assistance slew the rival chieftain 
and put all his troops to flight. This skirmish is said to have 
taken place in the plains between Mangalaveli and Kattakadu, 
and to support their assertion the Mookwas point out an ant 
hill in the vicinity, known by the name of Maniken JPtittoe, as 
the place where the remains of the slain chieftain were interred 
by the victors, after their revenge had been fully satisfied. In 
return for the service rendered them by the Arabs, the whole 
of the Mookwas embraced the Mobamedan religion; which 
many of their descendants afterwards renounced in favour 
of Christianity, through the influence of the Portuguese, 

After the defeat of the Karreyas, the Mookwas determined 
to send an embassy to the court of the emperor, in order 
to ingratiate themselves into his favour. They accordingly 
made choice of certain individuals for the purpose, and 
dispatched them to Sitavaka with many costly presents. 
When these delej^ates reached the capital and presented 
themselves to the emperor, he received them with uncommon 
kindness, and granted them several copper sannases or re- 
scripts, whereby the lands in the whole district of Putlam and 
Calpentyn were allotted to them for their maintenance as 

The Mookwas of Ceylon. 277 

paraveni; or, as it was subsequently designated Koppumuri 
paraveni, from their breaking off branches of trees and 
planting them as boundaries to their respective portions 
of land, when the division took place. Besides the assign- 
ment of land, the emperor constituted a royal tribunal at 
Ptitlam called Muttrakudam, and appointed eighteen of the 
Mookwas members of the same, under the authority of a 
Dissave or proconsul, who was to be annually sent from 
the court ; and also conferred on the said eighteen members 
the title of Wanniya, with the following privilege, viz. "That 
the tjfBces they held should be hereditary in their respective 
families; that they should not be capitally punished for 
any crime; that they should be exempted from the payment 
of tithes ; and lastly, that their relations to a certain degree 
should be free from performing any personal labour to 

On referring to the. ^awncwes inscribed on copper plates (of 
which their are but two extent), and comparing them with the 
accounts ^iven of the lanJs having been allotted to the 
Mookwas by the same emperor, and at the same time, there 
seems a great discrepancy ; because of the two sannases in 
question, one appears to have been given by Tami Vblla 
Bahoo, king o( Madampa, and the other by Buwaneka Ba- 
Hoo, emperor of Sitavaka^ at two distinct periods. But they 
acc*.ount for it by saying that these sannases were granted to 
their chiefs in after times, to confirm the original donation of 
the land on the part of the former emperor, who they say was 
Mala LA Tissa Raja, and who reigned between the years 
753 and 779 of our era. However this may be, the Mookwas 
appear to have been in possession of the whole lands in 
the district during the government of the native emperors, 
and for a considerable period maintained a sort of aristocra- 
tical government under their chiefs, till the district was con- 
quered by the Dutch ; who from political motives not only 
abridged their powers, but also monopolized several sources 
of their income. 

273 The Mookwas of Ceylon. 

T*!c tenure by which the lands were held exhibited a 
s'-'on-jf resembhintc to the feudal system of Europe, and 
nrror.liiiiT to the original institution, they were not in any 
w.iv uli..nablr; but in coarse of time, the Indo-Moors (who 
settled in the district some time after the MookwcLs) gaioiDf; 
an ascendancy over them by their pecuniary influence, gra- 
duilly bought up all their lands for very trifling coosiderations, 
so that none of the Mookojas remain at present in possession 
of their ancient property. 

After the Dutch conquest the Muttrakudam, or tribunal 
at Putlam, was abolished, and the Land Road established 
in its place. Of the aforementioned eighteen Wanniyoit, six 
were dismissed as superfluous, and the remaining twelve 
appointed to ofiiciate as members of the above court, under the 
presidency of the chief resident, or Opperhoofdt of Calpentyn, 
allowing: them in lieu of pay exemption from tithes on their 
cultivation only. Since the Island has been a British colony, 
and the ancient form of government changed, the Land Road 
has been abolished, — consequently the office and title 
of Wanniya has become extinct. The descendants of the 
Wanniyas ure however not called upon to perform any menial 
labour at present, and a few of them are occasionally commis- 
sioned by the collector to assess the tithes in the district. 

Having endeavoured in the preceding pages, to give an 
account of the origin and history of the M^okwas, 1 shall now 
proceed to exhibit a brief deicription of their distinctions, 
manners, and customs. 

The Mookwas are divided into seven distinct tribes, each 
denominated after the name of its founder, or the particular 
occupation professed by him. They are as follows : 

Ptchanda vagei Kalanga vagei 

Na'landa vagei Mudivilangu Pandiya Tever 

Pain vagei Vilangona vagei 

Koyta vagei 

The Mookwas of Ceylon, 279 

The Mookwas bear a close resemblance to the Tamuh both 
in their physiognomy, manners, and gait. The dress of the men 
consists of a cioth wrapped round the waist, a shaul thrown 
loosely across the shoulder, and on the head they wear a 
turban ; but like the Singhalese they never perforate their ears. 
The women have their ears bored, and decorated with gold 
earrings of various kinds, and their dress does not in the least 
differ from that of the Moors^ 

The Mookwas^ both Christians and Mahomedans, are placed 
under the orders of a headman styled Vidane Odyar, holding 
a commission under the hand and seal of the commissioner of 
revenue, and through him the people were formerly called 
upon to perform service to government. 

With regard to the ceremonies of marriage among the 
Mookwas, those who are Christians follow the rules cf thtir 
charch, -and the Mohamedans abide by the ordinances con- 
tained in the Koran ; but both sects observe the custom 
of having the tali or gold string, tied round the neck of 
the bride by the bridegroom, to confirm the union: on which 
occasion they generally decorate their houses with white cloth, 
and display many honorary distinctions. Besides this cere* 
mony, observed also by the Tamuls, the Mookwas observe the 
feast of purification on the seventh day after a girl is become 
marriageable, by inviting their friends and relations to an 
entertainment, and decorating the house with white cloth, &c« 
This ceremony is however losing ground among the Christian 
part of the Mookwas. In like manner when a boy attains 
a certain age, the ceremony of tying the talachila or head 
cloth round his head for the first time is performed. It is 
done in an auspicious hour, under the roof of a panda! 
erected for the purpose, either in connection with the dwelling 
bouse or detached from it, and decorated with white cloth. 
The people are invited by presenting them with a number 
of trays o( betel, calculated according to their rank, and when 
they are assembled, the young man on whom the ceremony 
is to be performed is seated on a covered stool, and the barber 

280 The Mookwas of Ceylon. 

firsf asking permission of the assembly, shaves off hui beard 
after rubbing; it with milk. When he is shaved he is conducted 
under a canopy to a well, and cloth is spread before him to 
walk upon ; he washes his body, returns to the pandal, and 
places himself on his seat. The talachila is then placed on a 
salver and handed round to each of the guests to touch, after 
which, the chief of the caste takes it up and ties it round the 
head of the youtli. On this occasion the guests severally make 
a present of money to the parents, and return to their houses. 

The Mookwas, in the following particulars, differ from all 
other castes in Ceylon with regard to the right of sncces- 
sion and inheritance : when a Mookwa dies, his sons and 
daughters inherit equally the property acquired by him daring 
his life time ; but the property which he had received from 
his ancestors, called 3Iudusum, devolves to the sons of his 
sister, or in failure of heirs in that branch, to the sons of 
his mother's sister's daughter, and so on to the fourth degree ; 
but in failure of heirs in all these degrees, it then goes to his 
own children, [aj 

Among the Mookwas the prejudice of caste is more rigidly 
attended to than among any other tiibe, the least infringement 
of a rule subjects the offender to ipsi facto e&communication 
from the community, and deprivation of the services of the 
barber and washermen ; consequently they are very circum- 
spect in their conduct. 

f«] This singular custom being found to correspond with that which prerails uoong 
the Nairs of Malabar, I have been induced to adyance the opinion that the Mookwrn 
are remotely allied to that race. 


No- 1. 

A Royal Grant of Land engraved on a copper plate ; literally 

translated Ironi the Singhalese. 


In the year of Saka 1467, 1 on Wednesday the fifth day 
of the moon, in the month of Rsala, 2 this day Raja 
Wanniya 3 having presented at the Royal Pa'ace of 
Madampa 4 thirty pairs of mc[)hant tusks, the village 
of Navakkadu, 5 Sitravela, 6 and Puttalama, were 
granted to him ; together with this side of the mount u'u 
Kudiremahy 8 this side of Uuluvahu Kubuka, 9 situated 
at (the river) Kala Oy a, 10 this side of Diwrungalay 11 
and this side of the rock of Paramakanda, l^ inclasive. 
Also a signet ring, a jacket with frills round the c "liar, and a 
silver sword, were bestow ed on him as samakattu. 13 

As these villages have been marked by breaking off the 
branches of trees, 14 they are granted as an unalienable 

If there be any who should violate this matter, they will be 
born as crows and dogs. 15 

This resplendent edict is granted to Raja Wanniya in 
perpetuity, as long as Etugala and Andagala, 16 the sun 
and moon, endure. 

This resplendent edict was granted in the time of king 
Tani Valla Bahoo, 47 of Madampa 

2 o 

'J^*J AppeiitliA. 


1 'Jdci:,'!: tlic Smnftciif tniploy tlic year cf Bxtddha to o irpule time in religious 
jiHiiirs fniu tlie t-Ki (f y/M(A//m }tt, in ctiuin'ii i\ilh tlie Ji.77</oo« and Tom ffv/«» they 
gciK'ially muke use of tiio era of Saka in all their public as well as private transactions, 
and the i>inghaU\u' literals whom 1 have consulted on the suhject, coincide with mc in 
ileduciiig the latter inn: the reign of Salavafianu, wqW knt'^n to Orientalists as the 
iuccessor of Vthramailitir/a in the empire of Ilindcobtan. It mry not he amiss to 
ohserve here, that Capiaij: Mai<<>nv*s acioiii.t of the Soka era laving had its orign in 
the circumstance of a f; ujine hreaking out in Ciylnt in the time cf the empercff- 
Kuda ft'allah Gamla litjn (vide Asiatic liesrarches, vol. \ii. p. 52,) b totally destitute 
of foundation ; and in my opinion he must have been led into this error by relying-on 
ihe report of others, tl.ou^h l.e professes himself to be perfectly tuquaiiited with the 
histories contained in the liojcvu/iy and has given an Knglish \ersi(n of tome of its 
numerous chapters J he priscnt year of Saka being lldti, that which is specified in 
the grant corresponds with I54o of Christ* 

2 Esala aniwcn; Vj part of July and August, and it corresponds with the Tam%d 
month Adi 

3 liaja Wanniya was one of the members of the late Kfutrakudam at Putlam, and 
is also said to have exercised the olhce of Dismve* or proconsul, over certain parts of 
Demala Palloo, whieii are now collectively culied after his name Hajawanni I'attoo) 
and o?cr which one of his (!escendan's, who retains possession of the grant, still presides^ 
but with very limited powc r ,. 

4 Mad vipa, properly Muhatt ^mpa. that is •* the great city," is situated at no great 
distance to the ol Ch'li.w, juul is ehitfiv iiihab.ted by the Singhalese. 
N'alhnttn writes the nanic oi' this place Candupitti Madampa, as quoted by Pnilale* 
THE8 in his History of Ceylon, p lo. 1 he site of the ancient city is marked out by 
the base of the king\ p:t4ace and otiicr public edifices found in the neighbourhood of 
the present village, in tlie jungle called MiUi^akele., 

5 Navakadu in Tamul sigm'fies <* the forest of Jatnbti trees,** but tho Singhalese 
derive its origin from the word iS'ai;oA:v.rfi/i;cr, implying '•^ the ] Ince of shipwreck ;^^ 
some, however, treat both these etymologies as fanciful, and labour to trace it from the 
word Navakadu or ** nine swords ; ** alleging that in primitive times the kings of 
Kandy were wont to visit thii> village soon after their coronation ; and to assume the 
sword of state after performing ablution ii\ the sea, and that no less than nine kings had 
thus come and assumed their sword at the place. It is situated on the peninsula Of 
Calpentyn, opposite to Putlam, and is rcmaikable for the good water springs with 
which it abounds. 

6 Sitravela, a small Nillage in the r.eighuoinhood of Putlam. 

7 Putlalama or Putlmn, a word com|ounc!eil of pudu new, and alain salt pans, 
which were, and still are. one of tic i lii oipal .-cuuts of its revenue. Jta origiiMt 

Appendix, 283 

appellation is said to be Kaliyanatooremugam, (in Singhalese, Mngullotamune) or " the 
port of marnagei'' bestowed on it from its having been the place where Vijata Raja. 
the first kin^ of Ceyion, was wedded lo the princess Kuvhni who resided in the neigh- 
bourhood, in the town called Tammanna Nuvara, at present thj jungle called Tam- 
mono Vila, Kkox writes the name of this village Portahon, and brieiiy describes it in 
the following terms : " There is a part in the co'mtry of Portaloon, lying on the west 
ide of this island, whence part of the king's country is supplied with salt and fish ; 
where they have some small trade vNith the Dutch, who have a fort upon the point to 
prevent boats from coming.** 

8 Kudiremnle% a small hill standing on the margin of the bay of PyJcohmf th« 
northern limit of the district of Putlam, distinguishing it from that of Manaar. It is 
very probable that the Hipporos of Greek writers was no others than the bay near 
JTudiremale, as the word clearly imports; vide IndiophUus' letter published in the 
Madras Government Gazette of the I6tli September, 18-iO. 

9 Uluvahu Kubuka, a small village in the country of Nuvarakalava, which has 
received the curious name of Uluoahut or door framj, from two Kubuka trees standing 
at the place near to each other, and by tlieir crooked growth approximating to a door 
frame in shape. 

10 Kala Oya, this river has it^ source from the breach of a very large tank in 
Nuvarakalava, and after winding through that province, disembogues itself into the 
gulf of Calpentyn. 

1 1 Diivrungaia, a rock \\\ th3 Demafa Pattoo which serves as a boundary between 
that province and Mogul Korle. Its name is formed of two Singhalese words signify- 
ing ''^ihe rock of conjurementi^* and the native accounts state that it was called so from 
the chieftains of lioth piMviiices hiving met there and bound themselves by a solemn 
oath never to make any encroachment on each other*s territory. 

12 Paramakanda, a small hill in the Demala Patloo noted fof- a Wihare which 
stands bencatii it. 

13 Saniakkattu, a term applied by the Singhalese to any thing bestowed by the king 
on his subjects, and is synonimous with the Hindot word Kelaut- 

11 In the early period of colonization in the island, there was a custom 
observed among the settlers, that when any one of them had a wish for a tract of land 
and had broken off the branches of trees and planted them on the four limits of it to 
signify the samc^ the others scrupulously avoided all interference with the land so 
marked ; and the planter of the branches and his posterity were left in quite possession 
of the land by a tenure hence denominated Atuhanpraveni, from atta a branch, hana 
a mark, and praven possession 

15 This is the penalty usually added in all the Singhalese grants for violating them ; 
and ridiculous as it may appear to us, it had generally the desired effect of insuring to 
the grantee the quiet possession of the land assigned him. 

2^<4 Appendix. 

It appoara that the Hekrevn held the dog in dtCcttation. as w leom in tfie 
turen ; I iit it.e * tn^htUiMe rifkoii lioth dog^and crows equally vile, probably from tfaos 
ron^'(*erirp tin' l.-ttcr a« tlie noAan or vehicle of Mni, the aouroe of all mialbrtoiie. 
Aro(rrclin5( to Virgil a^ quotinl ly CuAMB^aft in hia CpdopttUn, the Momana r^aidad 
it a ciiid of^ien when Uie ciow wa» keen on the left and 1 baveaeen a treatiae in 2VimM^ 
toiitainiiig ruifs auguring froni tlie croaking of t at bird. 

IG Ftvcala, ard yindaeola arc two lar;;c rocks in the Seven Korlea^ genenlly 
alluded to by the Sin£kaUif in their public acts as symbols of eternitj. 

17 Tani T .1 a Pahoo. llii» prince wan the youngtT brother of Dharmm PaBa 
Bahoo, emperor of Cotta, from whom it letms he h4d the small kingdom of AfadaMp* 
assigned to lain. 

No. 2 

A Royal Grant of Land engraved on a copper plate ; literally 

translated from the Singhalese, 


In the year o( Saka 1469, 1 on a Wednesday in the month 
of Nikini, 2 the seven Vilas 3 of Pomparippoo, 4 and (the 
Yillages) Lunavila, Sanatkitdiyiruppu, Mahanabandavla, and 
Milapotana, with ♦he dry and irrigated lands inclusive, were 
granted to Nava Ratna Wanniya of Lunavila, during the 
time of the emperor of Sltavaka, 5 These lands were 
bestowed on him because he presented two while umbrellas, 
one lance, one sword, one jacket with fiills round the collar, 
one signet ring, two pair of elephant tusks, and two pieces of 
cloth embroidered with gold. 

As long as the Etugala and Andagala, the sun and moon 
endure, if any one should violate this matter, he will be born 
as a crow and as a djg. 

This resplendent e'Jict was granted to Nava Ratna Wan- 
niya in perpetuity. 

1 A. D. 1547. 

2 Nikini answers to part of August and September, and corresponds with the 
Tamul month Awan. 

S VUat are a kind of bogs, but susceptible of cultivation. The seven viloi specified 
in thegrant are called as follows : MailavUa, PeruvHa, ^aluvUa, Maravilot TeviavUa 
KblinchimU, jiitavUa, and TaleivUa 

ifW) Appendix. 

4 PomjMrippu f't VomjKirippo^ would he more correctly written PmtpofiMj^it mean, 
ing in TamuU "<^<^ ;;o'<len plains i '* and this MgniAcAnt ap}>elUliTe was bestowed on 
the prorince pruhably in a^ll^ioIl lo it& rich toil. Though it is now almost a wastes 
yet the numi'roub rvm.iins of buildings., apparently ttf Hindoo architecture, found 
in various quancrs, privo if tu have lK*en in ancient periods the proud abode of prin. 
and nobles of that n<4tio:i 

5 Siiataka (called by tlie Tnmuh with very little variation l^amUu:) is utuated id»out 
90 milec east of Colwibt a'.\\ acoor.Ii-iz tj i rn.i lion in ?enpral receptioi amon^r the 
JSmghcJese, owe^ its r.amc* to .S£/a, who is s\\d to have been kept in confinement at the 
place by Ratanay the ancient ^i-int king of Ceylon. It is remarkible in Singhalem 
history for having continued during a \oi\^ period the sumptuous residence of tlieir 
tmperora. * 

It ii vcr . singular that the name of the emperor who was the donor of the lands is 
not inserted in the grant ; but, however, by comparing the ditc witli the chronologi. 
cat list of tlie sovereigns ofC'ej/lonin Philaletiies* work, I see that the emperor who 
reigned at |)ie time was called by the title of Buvaneka Bakoo Xfahm Baja, 




In consequence of orders from England great changes have taken place in the 
Division, as well as in the Civil and Judicial establishments, of the Island, since 
this vtroik was sent to the Press: the Author therefore begs to annet a copy of 
the Charter and Proclamation upon which these changes have been framed. 


William tub Fourth^ bt the grace of dw, of the United Kingdom of Great 
Britain and Ireland King, Defender of the Faith, To all to whom these presents 
shall comet Greeting. 

1. Whereas His late Majesty King George the Third by three several Charters and 
Letters Patent under the Great Seal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and 
Ireland bearing date respectively at Westminster the Eightheenth day of April in the 
year of Our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and One, the Sixth day of August 
in the year of Our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and Ten, and the Thirteenth 
day of October in the year of Our Lord One Thousand Eight Hundred and Eleven* 
did establish within His said late Majesty's Settlements of the Island of Ceylon and 
the Territories and Dependencies thereof a certain Court called the Supreme Court of 
Judicature in the Island of Ceylon, and a certain other Court called the High Court of 
Appeal in the Island of Ceylon, and did make certain other provisions for the due 
administration of Justice in the said Settlements Territories and Dependencies. And 
whereas since the day on which the last of the said several Charters and Letters Patent 
bears date a certain Territory in the Interior of the said Island of Ceylon, called the 
Kingdom of Kandy or the Kandyan Provinces of the Island of Ceylon, hath become 
and now is subject to His Majesty, whereby the whole Island of Ceylon virith its De- 
pendencies has become and now is part of His Majesty's Do ninions. ^nd whereas it is 
provided by each and every of the said several Charters and Letters l*atent that nothing 
therein respectively contained or any Act which should be done under the authority 
thereof respectively should expend or be deemed or construed to extend to prevent His 
said late Majesty his Heirs and Successors from making such further or other provision 
for the Administration of Ju-stice throughout the said Settlements and 7 erritories in the 
said Island of Ceylon with their Dependenci&» at His and Their Will and Pleasure and 
as Circumstances might require His sai 1 late Majesty meaning and intending fully and 
absolutely and to all intents and purposes whatsoever to reserve to Him ^eif His Heira 
ftad Successors such and the same rights and powers in and over the said SetUemesta 


ii The Charier » 

Territoriet and Dependencies and every part tliercof and especially touching tiie 
Administration of Justice therein and all other Matters and Things in and by the said 
several Charters and Letters I'atent provided for as if the said several Charters and 
Letters Patent bad not been made any thing therein contained or any Lavr Custom 
Usage Matter or Thing whatsoever to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding, uind 
whereas it is expedient to niake more general and more effectual provisions for the 
Administration of Justice in tlie said Island and its Dependendes. iVtno know t^e 
that We upon full consideration of tlie premises and of Our certain knowledge and 
mere motion have thought fit to revoke and annul ^nd we hereby revoke and annui 
eadi and every of the said Charters and Letters Patent such revocation to take eflfect at 
and from after the time when (as hereinafter mentioned; this Our Charter will come 
into operation in Our said Island. 

2. ^nd whereas in the several Districts and Provinces of the said Island there 
now are several Courts appointed to administer Justice by the exercise of Original 
Jurisdiction to the Inhabitants of the said Districts and Provinces known respectively 
by the names and titles of the Provincial Courts the Courts of the Sitting Magistrates^ 
the Court of the Judicial Commissioner, the Court of the Judicial Agent, the Courts 
of the Agents of Government, the Revenue Courts, and the Court of the Sitting Magis. 
trate of the Mahabadde, uind whereas such Courts differ among themselves in respect 
of their constitution of their rules of procedure and of the kinds and degrees of the 
Jurisdictions which they exercise within the limits of tlieir respective Districts or Pro- 
vinces, Now know ye that We upon full consideration of the Premises have thought 
fit to direct ordain and appoint Uiat the said Provincial Courts, the said Courts of the 
Sitting Magistrates, the said Court of the Judicial Commissioner, the said Court of the 
Judicial Agent, the said Courts of the Agents of Government, the said Revenue 
Courts, and the said Court of the Sitting Magistrate of the Mahabadde, shall be and 
the same are hereby respectively abolished, such abolition to take effect at and from 
after the time when (as hereinafter mentioned) this Our Charter will come into opera- 
tion in Our said Island, 

3. And whereas the Governor of Our said Island for the time being and the said 
Court of the Judicial Commissioner have hitherto exercised an Appellate Jurisdiction 
for the Administration of Justice in certain Cases* arising in the Kandyan Provinces of 
Our said Island, And whereas certain Courts called the Minor Courts of Appeal and 
certain Courts called the Minor Courts of Appeal for Revenue Cases have hitherto 
exercised an Appellate Jurisdiction for the Administration orjustice in certain Cases 
arising in the Maritime Provinces of the said Island, And whereas the existence 
of several independent Appellate Judicatures in the said Island tends to introduce 
uncertainty into the Administration of Justice there, Now know ye that We upon full 
consideration of the premises have thought fit to direct and ordain and do hereby direct 
and ordain that the said Appellate Jurisdictions of the Governor of the said Island and 
of the said Court of the Judicial Commissioner respectively shall be and the same are 
hereby respectively abolished and that the said Minor Courts of Appeal and the sud 
Minor Couit of Appeal for Revenue Cases and such their Appellate Jurisdiction 
fhsill h» and tha same are hereby abolished. 

The Charter. iii 

4. ^nc^ /oj^rovu/e for the Administration of Justice hereafter in Our said Island Our 
Will and Pleasure is And we do hereby direct that the entire Administration of Justice 
Civil and Criminal therein shall be Tested exclusively in the Courts erected and con> 
stituted by Uiis Our Charter and in such other Courts as may be holden within the said 
Island under any Commission issued or to be issued in pursuance of the Statutes in that 
case made and provided for the trial of Offences committed on the Seas or within the 
Jurisdiction of Our Lord High Admiral or the Commissioners for executing his Office 
or under any Commission issued or to be issued by Our Lord High Admiral or by the 
Commissioners for executing his Office for the time being And it is our pleasure and 
we kerebrj declare that it is not and shall not be competent to the Governor of Our said 
Island by any Law or Ordinance to be by him made with the advice of the Legislative 
Council thereof or otherwise howsoever to constitute or establish any Court for the 
administration of Justice in any Case Civil or Criminal save as hereinafter is expressly 
saved and provided Provided nevertheless and we do hereby declare that nothing herein 
contained shall extend or be construed to extend to prevent any persons from submit- 
ting their differences to the Arbitration of certain Assemblies of the Inhabitants of 
Villages known in Our said Island by the name of Gangsabes. 

5. And we do hereby grant direct and appoint that there shall be within the said 
Island of Ceylon one Supreme Court which shall be called **The Supreme Court of the 
Island of Cej^li»n»** 

6. And we do direct and appoint that the said Supreme Court of the Island of 
Ceylon shall consist of and be holden by and before one Chief Justice and two Puisne 
Justices and that the Chief Justice shall be called and known by the name and style of 
T/ie Chief Justice of the Island of Ceylon, And that the said Chief Justice and Puisne 
Justices shall from time to time be nominated and appointed to such their Offices 
by Letters Patent to be issued under the Public Seal of the said Island in pursuance 
of Warrants to be from time to time issued by Us Our Heirs and Successors under 
Our or Their Sign Manual and shall hold such their Offices during the pleasure of Us 
Our Heirs and Successors. 

7. And we do further direct and appoint that upon the death resignation sickness or 
incapacity of the said Chief Justice or any of the said Puisne Justices or in case of the 
absence of any of them from tlie said Island or in case of any such suspension from 
Office as hereinafter mentioned of any such Chief Justice it shall and may be lawful to 
and for the Governor of Our said Island for the time being by Letters Patent to be by 
him for that purpose made and issued under the Public Seal of the said island to 
nominate and appoint some fit and proper Persons to act as and in the place and stead 
of any such Chief Justice or Puisne Justice so dying or resigning or labouring under 
such sickness or incapacity as aforesaid or being so absent as aforesaid from tlie said 
Colony or being se suspended until the Vacancy or Vacancies so created by any such 
death or resignation or sickness or incapacity or absence or suspension shall be supplied 
by a new Appointment to be made in manner aforesaid or until the Chief Justice 
or Puisne Justice so becoming sick or incapable or being absent or suspended as 
aforesaid shall resume such his Office and enter ii^to the discharge of the duties thereof* 

iv Tlie Charier. 

8. Ami where>.s inny arise in which it may seem necessary to Our Crovemor 
for the time bein^ of Our said Island that a Judge of the said Court should be 
suspended from tlie exercise of his functions tlicrein provisionally until Our pleasure 
can he known, And it is expedient that no such Act of suspension should take place 
except upon tlie most evident necessity and after the most mature deliberation. And that 
in any sucli event the Judge wiio may be so suspended should receire the most early 
complete and authentic information of the grounds of such Proceedings against him. 
We do therefore declare direct and appoint that it shall and may be lawful for the Go- 
vernor of Our said Island for tlie time being by any Order or Orders to t)e by him for 
that purpose made and issued under the Public Seal of the said Island with the advice 
and consent of the Executive ( ouncil of the said Island or the major p.irt of them upon 
proof of the misconduct of or incapacity of any such Chief Justice or Puisne Justice 
as aforesaid but not otherwise to su^^pend him from such his Office and from the 
discharge of the duties thereof Provided that in every such case the said Governor sliall 
immediately report for Our information tlirough one of Our Principal Secretaries 
of ^tate the grounds and causes of such suspension And provided also that a full 
statement be entered on the Minutes of the said Executive Council of the Grounds of 
such proceeding and of the Evidence upon which the same may be founded a full 
Copy of which Minutes and Evidence shall by such Governor be transmitted to such 
Judge togcttier with the Order suspending him from such his Office, Aj^d we do 
hereby reserve to Us Our Heirs and Successors with the advice of Our or Their Privy 
Council full power and authority to confirm or to disallow any such suspension from 
office as aforesaid of any such Chief Justice or Puisne Justice. 

9. And we do hereby give and grant to Our said Chief Justice for the time being 
rank and precedei ce above and before all Our Subjects whomsoever within the 
said Island and its Dependencies exceptmg the Govtrnor or Lieutenant Governor for 
the time being thereof ami excepting such persons as by Law or Usage in England 
take place before Our Court of King's Bench. 

10. And we do hereby give and grant to the said Puisne Justices for the time belns 
rank and precedence above and before all Our Subjects whomsoever witliin the said 
Island and its Dependencies excepting the Governor or Lieutenant Governor for the 
time being thereof the said Chief Justice and the Officer for the time being Command- 
ing Our Forces in the said Island and its Dependencies and expecting such persons as 
by Law or Usage in England take place before Our Puisne Justices of Our Court of 
KingN Bench, And we do hereby declare that the said Puisne Justice;) shall take rank 
and precedence between themselves according to the priority of their appointments 

1 1. And we do furthergrant direct ordain and appoint that the said Supreme Court 
of the Island of Ceylon shall have and use as occanio-i may require a Seal bearin^*' 
a Device and Impression of Our Royal Arms with an Exergue or Label surrounding 
the same with this Inscription ^'The Seal of the ^up'^eme Court of the Island of Ceylon,** 
And that the said Seal shall be delivered to and shall be kept in the custody of the 
said Chief Justice with full liberty to deliver tlie same to any Puisne Justice of 
the said Court for yLny tem]K)rary purpose and in cose oi the Vacancy of or suspension 

The Charter, y 

ttovci Office of the Chief Justice the same shall be delivered over to and kept in the 
custody of such person as shall be appointed by the said Governor of the said Island to 
act as and in the place and stead of the Chief Justice. 

12. And we do further direct and appoint that no such Chief Justice or Puisne 
Justice as aforesaid shall be capable of accepting taking or performing any other 
Office or Place of Profit or Emolument within the said Island on pain that the 
acceptance of such other Office as aforesaid shall be ipso facto an avoidance of such his 
Office of Chief Justice or Puisne Justice as the case may be and the salary thereof 
shall cease accordingly from the time of such acceptance of any other Office or Place 
Provided nevertheless that no such Chief Justice or Puisne Justice shall be readered 
incapable of holding his Office or shall forfeit his Salary by accepting the Office 
of Judge of the Court of Vice Admiralty in the said I'sland or of Commissioner fur 
the Trial and Adjudication of Prize Causes and other Maritime Questions arising in 

13. And we do hereby constitute and appoint Our Trusty and Wellbeloved Sir 
Charles ^Aarshall Knight to be the first Chief Justice of the said Supreme Court and 
Our Trusty and Wellbeloved William Rough Esquire Serjeant at Law to be Senior 
Puisne Justice of the said Supreme Court and Our Trusty and Wellbeloved William 
KoRRis Esquire to be the Second Puisne Justice of the said Supreme Court* 

14. And we do hereby direct ordain appoint and declare that there shall be attached 

and belong to the said Court an Officer to be styled the Register and Keeper of 

Jtecords of the said Court and such and so many other Officers as to Our Chief Justice 

of the said Court for the time being from time to time appear to be necessary for 

the Administration of Justice and the due execution of the Powers and Authoridei 

which are granted and committed to the said Court by these Our Letters Patent, 

Provided nevertheless that no Office shall be created in the said Court unless th« 

Governor of the said Island for the time being shall first signify his appro!>ation thereof 

to the said Chief Justice for the time being in writing under the Hand of such 


15 And we do further direct and declare Our will to be that all the subordinate 
Officers of the said Court shall be appointed to such their Offices by Us or by the 
Governor of the said Island on Our behalf by Conmissions to be for that purpose 
used under the Public Seal of the said Island Provi ed never Helens that all persons who 
shall be attached to or hold any Office in the said Court as Clerk or Private Secretary 
to any of the Judges thereof shall' be appointed to such Office by Uie Judge for the 
time being whom such person may so serve in any such capacity. 

16. And we do further direct and appoint that the several Officers of the said 
Supreme Court shall hold their respective Offices during the pleasure of Us Our Heirs 
and Successors and shall be subject to be suspended froua their Offices thereia by the 
ttid Court for misconduct or other sufficient cause. 

▼i The Charter. 

17. jind we do hereby authorise and empower the said Suprtmt Court to admit end 
enrol as Advocafes or Proctors in the said Supreme Court ail such persons being 
of good repute as sliall upon examination bj one or more of the said Justices of te 
said Supreme Court appear to be of competent knowledge and ability Provided o/tnoys 
that whenever the said Supreme Court shall refuse to admit and enrol any pcnon 
applying to be admitted and enrolled as an Advocate or Proctor in the said Supreme 
Court the Judges of the said Court shall in open Court assign and declare the reaaont 
of refusal And we do direct and declare that no persons whatsoever not so admitted 
and enrolled as aforesaid shall be allowed to appear plead or act in the said Supreme 
Court for or on behalf of any other person being a Suitor in the said Court. 

1& And we do further declare Our Pleasure to be and do hereby ordain and 
appoint that for the purpose of the Administration if Justice under this Our Charter 
the said Island of Ceylon shall be divided into the District of Colombo and three 
Circuito to lie called respectively The Northern Circuit The Southern Circuit and The 
Eastern Circuit and that the said Korthern Circuit shall comprise the District of Jafitia 
togethtr with the several Districts which are parcel of the Maritime Provinces of the said 
I&jand and which lie to Uie Westward of tlie Kandyan Provinces of the said Island 
between the said District of Jaffna and the District of Colombo, and that the said 
Southern Circuit shall comprise the District of the Mahagampattoo and all the 
Districts parcel of the Maritime Provinces of the said Island lying to the Westward 
and Southward of the Kandyan Provinces of the said Island between the district of 
the Mahagampattoo and tlie District of Colombo and that the said Eastern Circuit 
shall comprise all the Kandyan Provinces of tl:e said Island and all the Districts 
parcel of the Maritiire Provinces of the said Island lying to the Eastward of the 
Kundyan Provinces of the said Island between the District of Jaffna and the District 
of the Mahagampattoo Provided nevertheless that it shall be lawful for the Governor for 
the time being of Our said Island on any application to him for that purpose made 
in writing under the Hands of the Judges for the time being of the said Supreme 
Court or tlie major part of them but not otherwise by any Proclamation or Proclama- 
tions to be from time to time for that purpose issued to alter as occasion may require 
the before mentioned Division of the said Island as aforesaid and to establish any other 
Division or Divisions tliereof for that purpose which may appear to the said Governor 
and the whole or the major part of such Judges more conducive to the public convcni. 
ence and the effective administration of Justice in the said Island. 

19. And we hereby authorise and require the Governor for tlie time being of Our 


said Island with the concurrence of the Judges of the said Supreme Court or the major 
part of them but not otherwise by any Proclamation or Proclamations to be by him for 
that purpose from time to time issued to subdivide tnto Districts each of the Circuits 
into which the said Island exclusive of tlie District of Colombo is or shall be in manner 
aforesaid divided and from time to time with the like concurrence but not otherwise to 
revoke alter and amend any such Proclamation or Proclamations as occasion may 
require and which appointment of the said Circuits and Districts shall be made in such 
a manner as may best consist with and promote tlie prompt and effectual administration 
of Justice therein as hereinafter mentioned Provided always that until the aaid Circuita 

The Charter. vii 

shall in manner aforesaid be divided into Districts in pursuance ofthis our Charter the 
existing divisions of our said Island comprised within the respective limits of the said 
Circuits respectively shall for the purpose hereof be deemed and taken to be such 
Districts as aforesaid* 

20. And we do further grant direct and appoint that within each and every District 
of the said Island there shall be one Court to be called The District Court of such 
District And that every such District Court shall be holden by and before one Judge 
to be called the District Judge and three Assessors And that every such District Judge 
shall be appointed to such his Office by Letters Patent to be for that purpose issued 
under the Public Seal of the said Island by the Governor thereof for the time being in 
pursuance of Warrants to be for that purpose addressed to him by Us Our Heirs and 
Successors Provided that such Governor may and he b hereby autliorised and required 
to issue such Letters Patent as aforesaid provisionally and subject to the future signifi- 
cation of tlie pleasure of Us Our Heirs and Successors and without any such Warrant 
or Warrants as aforesaid on any occasions on which it may be necessary to make 
such appointment or appointments before the pleasure of Us Our Heirs and Successors 
can be known And we do hereby declare tliat the said District Judges respectively 
shall hold such their OflSjes during the pleasure of Us Oar Heirs and Successors. 

21. And we do further direct and appoint that the before mentioned Assessors shall 
be selected from amongst Our subjects inhabiting the said Island whether Natives 
thereof or otherwise and being respectively men of the full age of Twenty One years 
and upwards and possessing such Qualifications as shall from time to time be deter- 
mined by any Uules and Orders of Court to be made in the manner hereinafter men« 
tioned and not having been convicted of any infamous crime nor labouring under any 
such bodily or mental incitpacity as would render them unfit for the discharge of that 
Office, And we do hereby reserve to Ourselves Our Heirs and Successors the right 
of appointing in each of the said District Courts one Person to act as a Permanent 
Assessor, but in respect of all Assessors until any such appointment shall be made and 
after any such appointment sliall be made in respect of all Assessors not so appointed it 
is Our pleasure and We do hereby direct and declare that they shall be selected 
summoned and required to serve in the said Office in such manner as shall be provided 
by such Rules and Orders of Court as are hereinafter particularly mentioned. 

22« And we do hereby further direct that the Ministerial and other Subordinate 
Officers of the said District Courts respectively shall respectively be appointed to and 
shall hold such their Offices therein in such and the like manner in every respect as is 
hereinbefore provided with regard to the Ministerial and other Officers of the said 
Supreme Court and that the Admission and Enrolment of Persons to appear plead or 
act in any of the said District Courts as Advocates or Proctors sliall be regulated and 
provided for by such general Hules and Orders of Court as are hereinafter mentioned. 

23i Ajid we do further direct and appoint that tlie said Supreme Court shall be 
holden at Colombo in the said Island excepting for the purpose of such Circuits as 
*»*rriniiftfr mentioned and that every such District Court as afbresaid ahall be holden 

viii The Charter. 

at such convenient place within every such District as the Governor for the time being 
of Our said Island shall from time to time for that purpose appoint by any Proclama- 
tion or Proclamations to be by him in manner aforesaid issued for such Division aa 
aforesaid of tlie said Island into Districts. 

24. jind we do further grant direct and appoint tliat each of the said District Courts 
shall be a Court of Civil Jurisdiction and shall have cognizance of and full Power to 
hear and determine all Pleas Suits and Actions in which the Party or Parties Defend, 
ant shall be re»idoiit within the District in which any such Su-t or Action shall be 
brought or in which the Act Matter or Thing in respect of which any such Suit or 
Action shall be brought shall have been done or performed within &uch District 
Provided nevertheless tliat no such District Court as aforesaid shall be competent 
to hold Jurisdiction of or to hear or to determine any Cause Suit or Aclion wherein 
ttie Judge of such Court shall himself be a Party Plaintiff or Defendant but tliat every 
Cause Suit or Action which according to the Provisions aforesaid would have been 
cognizable in any District Court if tlie Judge of such Court had not l)een a Party 
thereto shall in that case be cognizable in the Court of any District immediately 

25. jind we do further grant direct and appoint that each of the said District Courts 
shall be a Court of Criminal Jurisd'clion and shall have full power and authority 
to inquire of all Crimes and Ofiunces committed wholly or in part wiihin the District 
to which such Court may belong and to hear try and determine all Prosecutions wiiicft 
shall be commenced against any Person or Persons for or in respect of any sadi 
Crimes or Offences or alleged Crimes or Offences. Provided always that such CrimU 
nal Jurisdiction as aforesaid shall not extend to any Case in which the person or 
Persons accused shall be charged with any Crime which according to any Law now 
or hereafter to be enforced within Our said Island shall be punished with Death 
or Transportation or Banii'hment or Imprisonment for more then twelve Calendar 
IVIonths or by Whipping exceeding One hundred laslies or by Fine exceeding Tea 

26. jind we do further grant direct and appoint that each of the said District Courti 
shall have the care and custody of tlie Persons and Estates of all Idiots and Lunatics 
and others of insane or nonsane mind resident within such Districts respectively with 
full power to appoint Guardians and Curators of all such Persons and their Estates 
and to make order for the maintenance of huch Persons and the proper management 
of their Estates and to take Proper Secui'ities for such management, from such Guai^ 
dians and Curators and to call them to account and to chnrge them with any Balance 
which may be due to any such Tersons as aforesaid or to their Estates and to enforce 
the payment thereof and to take order for the secure Investment of any such Balances 
and such Guardians and Curators from time to time to remove and replace as ocoasioo 
may require. 

27. ^nd we do further give and grant to the said District Courts respectively 
in their said respective Dbtricts full pow er and authority to appoint Administniton of 

The Charter. ix 

the Estates and Effects of aoy person dying within such respective Districts intestate 
or who may not have by any Last Will or Testament appointed any Executor or 
Trustee for the administration or execution thereof and like power and autliority 
to inquire into and determine upon the validity of any Document or Documents ad« 
duced before them as and for the Last Will and Testament of any Person who may 
have died within such Districts respectively and to record the same and to grant Pro • 
bate thereof with like Power and Authority to appoint Administrators for the adminis. 
tration or execution of the trusts of any such Last Will or Testament as aforesaid in 
cases where the Executors or Trustees thereby appointed shall not appear and take out 
Probate thereof or having appeared and taken oufe such Probate shall by Death or 
otherwise become incapable to carry any such trusts fully into execution. And we do 
further authorise and empower the said District Courts in their said respective Districts 
to take proper Securities from all Executors and Administrators of the Last Wills and 
Testaments of any deceased Persons or of the Estates and Lfiects of any Persons who 
may have died intestate for the faithful performance of such trusts and for the proper 
accounting to such Courts respectively for what may come to their Hands or be by 
them expended in the execution thereof with like power and authority to call all such 
Executors and Administrators to account and to charge them with any Balances which 
nay be due to the Estates of any such deceased Persons and to enforce the payment 
thereof and to take order for the secure investment of any such Balances and such 
Executors and Administrators from time to time to remove and replace as occasion 
may require, 

28. And whereas doubts might arise whether by virtue of the provisions aforesaid 
and without an express authority in that behalf the said District Courts would be com- 
petent to entertain Suits t!ierein brought for the protection of Our Revenue and for 
the punishment of offences committed against the Revenue Laws of Our said Island 
Now therefore for the removal of any such doubts Wo do hereby expressly declare that 
all Causes affecting Our Ilevenue arising within Oar said Island and all Prosecutions 
for the punishment of O ffences committed against tlie Rerenue Laws thereof shall be 
cognizable within the said District Court respectively in such and the same manner as 
any other suits or prosecutions Saving nevertheless and reserving to all Courts of Vice- 
Admiralty established or to be established within Our said Island all such rights 
powers jurisdictions and authority as arc by Law vested in them as fully as if this Our 
Charter had not been made Provided nevertheless that no such Prosecution for any 
Offence committed against the Revenue Laws shall be cognizable within any such 
District Court in cases where the Punishment may be of greater degree or amount tlian 
such District Court can under the provisions aforesaid award upon Prosecutions for 
any other Offences. 

29. And we do further grant and declare that the several Jurisdictions so vested as 
aforesaid in the said District Courts is and shall be an exclusive Jurisdiction and shall 
not on any Plea or Pretext whatsoever be assumed or exercised by any other Court 
Tribunal or Judge within Our said Island save and except in so far as cognizance of 
the same Suits Causes Actions Prosecutions Matters and Things is hereinafter expressly 

D • 

X The Charter. 

given bj way of Appeal to the >*^upreme Court aforesaid or to the reapcc ti ve Jadgei 
thereof And alto tare and except in so far as an Original Jurisdiction in certain Suits 
Causes Actions Prosecutions Matters and Things is hereinafter vested in the said Su. 
preme Court or in the respective Judges thereof And also save and except in as far as 
respects the Jurisdiction of the Court of Vice Admiralt j in tlie said Island* 

90. jfnd we do further direct and appoint that every final Sentence or Judgment of 
the said District Courts respectively and that every interlocutory Order of die sud 
Courts having the etflct of a final Sentence or Judgment and that every Order of any 
such Court having the effect of postponing the final decision of any Cause or Proeecn* 
tion there pending and any other Ordttr which to tlie Judge of any sucb Court may 
appear of adequate importance shall by such Judge be pronounced in Open Court And 
that such Judge shall in all such cases state in the presence and hearing cf the Asses- 
sors beforemeiitioned what are the Questions of Law and of Fact which have arisen for 
Adjudication and which are to be decided upon any such occasion together with his 
Opinion upon every such Question with the grounds and reason of every such Opinion 
And thai every such Assessor shall also in Open Court and in the presence and hearing 
of the Judge and the other Assessors declare his Opinion and deliver his vote upon eadi 
and every Quration winch the Judge shall have previously declared to have arisen for 
adjudication whether such questions shall relate to any matter of Law or to any matter 
of fact Provided nevertheieu tliat in case of any difference of Opinion between any sudi 
Judge and the majority or the whole of sucli Assessors upon any question of Law or 
of fact depending before any such District Court the Opinion of such Judge shall pre- 
vail and shall be taken as the Sentence Judgment or Order of the whole (^ourt But in 
every such case a Record shall be made and preserved among the Records of the said 
Court of the Questions declared by the Judge to have arisen for adjudication and of 
the Vote of sucli Judge and of every such Assessor upon each such question. 

31. And we do hereby grant declare direct and appoint that the Supreme Court of 
the Island of Ceylon shall be a Court of Appellate Jurisdiction for the correction of 
all Errors in fact or in Law which shall be committed by the said respective District 
Courts and shall have sole and exclusive cognizance by way of Appeal o* all Causes 
Suits Actions Prosecutions Matters and Things of which such District Courts may in 
pursuance of the Provisions of this Our Charter or any of them take cognizance by 
way of Original Jurisdiction And we do further grant to the said Supreme Court 
power jurisdiction and authority to hold an Original Jurisdiction for inquiring of all 
crimes and offences committed throughout the said Island and for the hearing trying 
and determining all Prosecutions which shall be cummenced against any Person or 
Persons for or in respect of any such Crimes or Offences or alleged Crimes or Offences 
And to provide for the due execution of the powers and authorities and jurisdictions so 
vested as aforesaid in the said Supreme Court It is Our further pleasure And We do 
direct ordain and appoint that Civil and Criminal Sessions of the said Supreme Court 
shall be holden by some one of the Judges thereof in each of the Circuits into which 
Our said Island is or shall be so divided as aforesaid. 

The Charter. xj 

Zt. Jnd we do further direct and appoint that such Sessiont ai aforesaid of the said 
Supreme Court shall be holden twice in each year within the Northern Southern and 
Eastern Circuits of the said Island respectively hereinbefore described or referred to at 
such places within such respective Circuits and at such particular times in each Year as 
the Governor for the time being of Our said Island shall after previous consultation 
with the Judges of the said Supreme Court by Proclamations to be by him from time 
to time for that purpose issued direct and appoint Provided always that tiie times and 
places for holding such Civil and Criminal Sessions of the said Supreme Court on such 
Circuits shall be so arranged as that all the Judges of the said Supreme Court shall 
never at the same time be absent from Colombo and that all such Judges shall be resi- 
dent at the same time at Colombo not less than one month twice in each Year. And 
we do direct and appoint that the Chief Justice of the said Court shall first choose the 
Circuit on which he will proceed for the purposes aforesaid and that the second choice 
shall be made by the Senior Puisne Justice for the time being. 

33. And we do further direct ordain and appoint that at every Civil Sessions of the 
Supreme Court to be holden on any such Circuit as aforesaid tiiree Assessors shall be 
associated with the Judge and that every Criminal Sessions of the Supreme Court to 
be holden on any such Circuit shall be holden before such Judge and a Jury of Thir- 
teen Men which Assessors and Jurors shall be selected summoned and required to 
appear and serve in such manner and form as shall be provided by such general Rules 
and Orders of Court as hereinafter mentioned 

34, And we do will ordain and appoint that within each and every of the said Circuits 
respectively all and every the Appellate Powers Jurisdictions and Authorities hereby 
vested in the Supreme Court shall be exercised by the Judge for the time being of such 
Circuit and the Assessors so to be associated with him as aforesaid and that within each 
and every of the said Circuits respectively all and every the original powers jurisdictions 
and authorities hereby vested in the said Supreme Court shall be exercised by the Judge 
for the time being of such Circuit who upon the Trial of any Crimes made cognizable 
by the said Supreme Court by way of such Original Jurisdiction as aforesaid shall be 
associated with such Jurors as aforesaid. 

35 And we do further direct and appoint that at every Civil Sessions of the said 
Supreme Court so to be holden as aforesaid on every such Circuit the said Court shall 
proceed to hear and determine all Appeals which may be then depending from any 
Sentence Judgment Decree or Order of any District Court within the limits of such 
Circuit and to affirm reverse correct alter and vary every such Sentence Judgment 
Decree or Order according to Law and if necessary to remand to the District Court 
for a furtiier hearinor or for the admission of any further evidence any Cause Suit or 
Action in which any such Appeal as aforesaid shall have been brous^ht and upon hear- 
ing every such Appeal it shall also be competent to the said Supreme Court to receive 
and admit or to exclude and rgect new evidence touching the matter at issue in any 
fuch Original Cause Suit or Action as Justice may require. 

36. And vte do further direct and appoint that the Supreme Court aforesaid at any 
CitU Sessions to be holden on any such Circuit as aforesaid shall have full power and 

xii The Charter. 

aatbority to grant ind issue ^Tandatesin the nature of Writs of Mandamus Procedendo 
and Prohibition against any District Court within the limits of such Circuit and to 
make order for the transfer of any Cause Suit or Action depending in any one District 
Cburt in such Circuit to any other District Court within the same Circuit if it shall be 
made to appear to the satisfaction of the Supreme Court at any such Civil Sessions as 
afbresidd that there is any sufficient cause or reason to conclude that in such particular 
Cause Suitor Action Justice would not probably be done in the District Court in 
which the same had so been commenced And in every such case the District Court to 
which any such Cause Suit or Action shall be so transferred shall take cognizance 
thereof and have power and Jurisdiction for the hearing trial and decision of the same 
as fully and effectually to all intents and purposes as tlie District Court in which the 
same was originally brought could or might have had. 

37. ^nd tee do further direct declare and appoint tliat the Judge of tlie Supreme 
Court holding any such Civil Session thereof as aforesaid on any such Circuit shall in 
open court state and declare in the presence and hearing of the Assessors beforemen- 
tioned what are the Questions of Law and of Fact arising for adjudication upon every 
Appeal brought before the said Supreme Court at such Sessions and which are then to. 
be decided and shall then pronounce his opinion upon every such Question with 
the grounds and reasons of every such opinion, and that every such Assessor shall 
thereupon also in open court and in the presence and hearing of such Judge and 
the other Assessors declare his Opinion and deliver his Vote upon such and every 
Question which the Judge shall have previously declared to have arisen for adjudica- 
tion whether such Question shall relate to any matter of Law or to any matter of Fact 
And in case of any difiercnce of Opinion between any such Judge and the majority or 
the whole of such Assessors upon any Question of Law or of Fact depending upon 
such Appeal, the Opinion of such Judge shall prevail and shall be taken as the 
Sentence Judgment or Order of the whole Court but in every such case a Record 
shall be made and preserved among the Records of the said Supreme Court of the 
Questions declared by the Judge to have arisen for Adjudication and of the Vote of 
such Judge and of every such Assessor upon every such Question* 

38. And we do further direct ordain and appoint that at every Criminal Sessions of 
the said Supreme Court to be holdcn on any such Circuit as aforesaid such Court shall 
proceed to hear and determine all Appeals ^hich may be then depending from any 
Sentence or Judgment pronounced by any District Court within the limits of any such 
Circuit in any Criminal Prosecution and to affirm reverse correct alter and vary every 
such Sentence and Judgment according to Law And upon hearing every such Appeal 
it shall also be competent to the said Supreme Court to receive and admit or to exclude 
and reject new evidence touching the Matters'at Issue in any such original prosecution 
as Justice may require And it stiall also be lawful for the said Supreme Court at any 
such Criminal Sessions as aforesaid to make Order for the Transfer of any Prosecution 
depending in any one District Court in such Circuit to any other District Court 
within the same Circuit if it shall be made to appear to the satisfaction of the said 
Supreme Court at any such Criminal Sessions as aforesaid that there is any sufficient 

The Charter. xiil 

cause or reason to conclude that in such particular Prosecutions justice vioxxXd not 
probably be done in the District Court in which the same bad been so commenced 
And in every such case the District Court to which any such Prosecution shall be so 
transferred shall take cognizance thereof and shall have power and jurisdiction for the 
Hearing Trial and Decision of the same as fully and effectually to all intents and pur. 
poses as the District Court in which the same was originally brought could or might 
have had. 

39. And we do further declare and ordain that notwithstanding the right of Appeal 
herifby given from the Judgments and Sentences of the said District Court upon such 
Criminal Prosecutions as aforesaid no such Appeal shall have the effect of staying the 
execution of any Sentence or Judgment pronounced by any such District Court upon 
m\j Prosecution unless the Judge of such District Court shall in the exercise of his 
discretion see fit to make order for the stay of any such execution pending such 

40. And we do further direct ordain and appoint that at every Criminal Session of 
the said Supreme Court so to be holden as aforesaid on every such Circuit the said 
Supreme Court shall inquire of all Crimes and Offences committed within the Limits 
of any such Circuit for the Trial of which such original Jurisdiction as aforesaid is by 
this Our ( barter vested in the said Supreme Court and which the King's Advocate or 
Deputy King's Advocate shall elect to prosecute before such Supreme Court and shall 
hear try and determine all Prosecutions which shall be commenced by the said King's 
Advocate or Deputy King's Advocate against any Person or Persons for or in respect 
of any such Crimes or Offences or alleged Crimes or Offences. 

4fl. ^nr/ u;^ (/o further direct and ordain that all Crimes and Offences cognizable 
before any of the Courts constituted by these Presents or deriving authority from the 
same shall be prosecuted and that all Fines Penalties and Forfeitures recoverable 
therein to Our use shall be sued for and recovered in the Name of Our King's 
Advocate of Our said Island and by him or by some Deputy King's Advocate by an 
Infer nation to be exhibited without the previous finding of any Inquest by any Grand 
Jury or otherwise. Provided nevertheless that it shall be competent to the said Supreme 
Court by such Rules and Orders of Court as aftermentioned to make any other and 
more convenient Provision for the prosecuting before the said District Courts Breaches 
of tlie Peace Petty Assaults and other Minor Offences of the like nature. 

42. And we do further direct and ordain that all Questions of Fact upon which Issue 
shall be joined at any such Oiminal Sessions as aforesaid of the said Supreme Court 
on any such Circuit as aforesaid shall be decided by such Jury of thirteen Men as 
aforesaid And that the Verdict of such Jury shall be pronounced in Open Ceurt 
by the Mouth of the Foreman and that if such Jury shall not agree upon their Verdict 
then the Verdict of the major part of such Jury shall be received and taken as the Ver. 
diet of the Jury collectively. 

43 And we do further direct and o^-d^iin that all Questions of Law which shall arise 
^r adjudication at any such Criminal Sessions as aforesaid of the said Supreme Couit 


xiv 77«e Charter. 

in any such Circuit at aforesaid shall he decided hy the Judge presiding at such S 
sions who bhall pronounce his Judgment tliereupon in Open Court and assign the 
Grounds and Reasons of such Judgment Saving neverthdeu to every such Judge the 
liight of referring such Questions for the decision of the Judges of the said Supreme 
Couf t collectively at their General Sessions in manner hereinalter mentioned. 

44w And we do further appoint declare and direct that in every case where any 
Person shall be adjudged to die by any Sentence of tlie Supreme Court of C^ur said 
Island at any such Criminal Sessions as aforesaid the Execution of such Sentence 
shall be respited until the Case of such Person shall have been reported by the Chief 
Jusdce or Puisne Justice vrho shall have presided at such Trial to the Governor 
of the said Island for the time being Mrhich Beport shall be made as soon after 
the passing of such Sentence as conveniently may be. 

45. And we do further appoint declare and direct that the Judge on any such 
Circuit as aforesaid holding tlie said Criminal Sessions of the said Supreme Court 
shall and may issue his Mandate under his hand and directed to all and every of 
the Fiscals or other Keepers of Prisons within the limits of his Circuit to certify to the 
said Judge the several persons then and there in any of their custody committed for and 
charged with any Crimes or OfTenccs whatsoever. And the said Fiscals or other 
Keepers of Prisons shall and are hereby required to make certify and transmit due 
Returns to such Mandate by specifying in a Calendar or List to be annexed to such 
Mandate respectively the time and times when all and every of the said Persons so in 
their custody was or were committed and by whose Authority particularly and on what 
Charge or Charges Crime or Crimes respectively in writing And to the said List 
or Calendar shall also be annexed such Information or Informations upon Oath 
as may have been taken against them or any of them and may be then remaining 
in the Hands of the said Fiscals or Keepers of Prisons or true Copies thereof attested 
by the said Fiscals or Keepers of Prisons respectively And if need be according to the 
tenor and exigency of such Mandate such Fiscals or Keepers of Prisons shall bring 
the s:ud persons so in their custody or any of them before the said Judge wheresoever 
the said Judge shall then be holding the Criminal Sessions of the said Supreme Court 
together with such witness or witnesses whose Name or Names shall appear to be 
written or endorsed on the respective Commitments by virtue of which such Prisoners 
were or was delivered into their custody respectively in order that such Prisoners or 
Prisoner may be dealt with according to Law Provided blways that wherever any Party 
or Parties stiall after tlie making out of any such Calendar or List and while such 
Judge shall be holding the Criminal Sessions of the said Supreme Court in the Town 
or Place wherein such Calendar or List was delivered be apprehended or committed 
on any Criminal Charge it shall and may be lawful for the Officer of such Supreme 
Court to insert the names of such Person or Persons in such Calendar or List. 

46. And we do further direct declare and appoint that any Judge of the Supreme 
Court remaining at Colombo shall within the Limits of the District of Colombo exer- 
cise the same Jurisdiction and hold such and the same Civil and Criminal Sessions as 
the said Judges of the Supreme Court are by these Presents directed appointed and 

Tlie Charter. xv 

ordained to exercise and to hold on their respective Circuits within the Limits of their 
respective Circuits. 

4-7. And we do further ordain and appoint that whenever any Question of Law 
Pleading Evidence or Practice shall arise for Adjudication at any Civil or Criminal 
Sessions of the said Supreme Court at any such Circuit as aforesaid or within the said 
District of Colombo which shall appear to the Judge presiding at such Sessions to be a 
Question of doubt and difficulty it shall he lawful for such Judge to receive such 
Question of Law Pleading Evidence or Practice for the decision of the Judges of the 
said Supreme Court collectively and to report any Question so reserved to the said 
Judges at some General Sessions of the saidl Supreme Court to be held for that purpose 
as hereinafter mentioned. And we io further direct and appoint that the Judges of the 
said Supreme Court shall from time to time as occasion may require collectively hold 
a general Sessions at Colombo to hear and inquire of any Questions of Law Pleading 
Evidence or Practice so reserved as aforesaid and to decide the same according to Law. 

48. And we further authorize and require the respective Judges of the said Supreme 
Court on such Circuits as aforesaid and at the Sessions so to be holden for the District 
of Colombo to inspect and examine the Records of the different District Courts And 
if it shall appear to them that contradictory or inconsistent decisions have been given by 
different District Courts or by the same District Court upon different occasions upon 
any matters of Law Evidence Pleading or Practice then and in every such Case the 
said Judges of the Supreme Court shall report to the Judges of the Supreme Court at 
Colombo at such General Sessions as aforesaid any such contradictions or inconsistent 
cies and the said Judges of the Supreme Court shall after due consideration of the 
matters so brought before them prepare the drafl of such a declaratory Law upon any 
matter of Law or Evidence in respect to which such contradictory or inconsistent deci- 
sions shall have been given^ as the occasion shall appear to them to require and shall 
transmit such draft under the Seal of the said Court to the Governor for the time being 
of our said Island who shall thereupon lay the draft of such declaratory Law before the 
J^egislative Council of the said Island for their consideration. And we further direct 
and ordain that the said Judges of the Supreme Court shall in pursuance of the Powers 
hereinafter vested in them after due consideration of any Report so to be made as 
aforesaid by any such Judge of any such contradiction or inconsistency as aforesaid 
in any matter of Pleading or Practice make or establish such General Rules or Orders 
of Court for the removal of any doubts respecting any such matters as the occasion 
shall appear to them to require. 

49. And we do further ordain and appoint that the ssdd Supreme Court or any Judge 
thereof at any Sessions so to be holden as aforesaid on any such Circuit as aforesaid or 
in the District of Colombo or at any General Sessions of the Judges of the said Court 
collectively shall be and are hereby authorized to grant and issue Mandates in the na- 
ture of Writs of Habeas Corpus and to grant or refuse such Mandates to bring up the 
Body of any Person who shall be imprisoned within any part of the said Island or its 
Dependencies and to discharge or remand any Person so brought up or otherwise deal 
with such Person according to Law And we do further direct and appoint that the said 

xvi The Charter. 

Supreme Court or any Judge thereof at any Sessions so to be holden on any sudi 
Circuit a<t aforesaid or in the District of Colombo or at any General Sessions of the 
said Court collectively shall be and They and He are and is hereby authorized to grant 
and issue Injunctions to prevent any irremediable mischief which might ensue befbre 
the party making application for such Injunction could prevent the same by bringing 
an Action in any District Court Provided always that it shall not be lawful for the aaid 
Su).reme Court nor for any Judge thereof in any case to grant an Injunction to pre. 
vent any Person from suing or prosecuting a suit in any District Court or to prevent 
any Party to any Suit in any District Court from appealing or prosecuting an appeal 
to any Court of Appeal or to prevent any Party to any Suit in any Court of Original 
Jurisdiction or in any Court of Appeal from insisting upon any ground of Action 
Defence or Appeal* 

50. jind whereas it may be expedient that the Judges of the said Supreme Court of 
Colombo previously to the commencement of any such Circuits as aforesaid should be 
enabled to inspect and examine the Records of the said District Court in casea upon 
which Appe-ils t ay have been entered And it may also be convenient that with 
the consent ot the litigant Parties the hearing of such Appeals should take place before 
the Judges of the said Court collectively at their General Sessions at Colombo and 
not at such Circuits as aforesaid And it may also be convenient that in certain Cases 
the Judges of the said Supreme Court collectively at such General Sessions ahould 
be authorized to decide in a summary way and without further argument Questions 
arising upon any such Appeals We do therefore further will direct ordain and appoint 
that it shall be lawful for the Judges of the said Supreme Court by such General 
Kules and Orders as hereinafler mentioned to require the said District Courts to trans* 
mit to thera at Colombo the records of such District Courts in any Cases upon which 
Appeals may have been entered And we do authorize and empower the Judges of the 
said Supreme Court collectively at any such General Sessions a-t aforesaid with the 
consent of all the litigant Parties but not otherwise (save as hereinafter provided 
in cases appealed to Us in our Privy Council) to hear any such Appeals or to decide 
the same or any particular Question or Questions arising thereupon in a summary way 
and without further Argument and to remit any such Records with such their final 
decision thereupon to such District Courts to be by them carried into execution. 

51. And whereas for carrying into effect the various Provisions of this Present 
Charter and for the more prompt and effectual Administration of Justice in Our said 
Island it is necessary that Regulations should be made respecting the course and 
manner of proceeding to be observed and followed in all Suits Actions and Criminal 
Prosecutions and other Proceedings whatsoever to be brought commenced had or taken 
within the said District Courts and the said Supreme Court respeciivcly which Regu« 
lations cannot he properly made except by the Judges of the said Supreme Court We 
do therefore hertby further declare Our Pleasure to be and do will ordain direct and 
appoint that it sliali be Iiwrul for the Judges of the said Supreme Court collectively at 
any General Session* to lie by them holden at Colombo as aforesaid from time to time 
to form constitute and establish such General Rules and Orders of Court as to tbem 

ITie Charter. xvii 

shall seem meet touching and concerning the time and place of holding nny General 
Sessions of the Judges of the said Supreme Court collectively and any Civil or Criirii- 
nal Sessions of the said Supreme Court on any such Circuits as aforesaid or in tha 
District of Colombo and the said several District Courts as shall not be inconsistent 
with the Authority hereinbefore granted to the Governor of Our said Island respecting 
the appointing of the times at which and the Places to which the Judges of the said 
Supreme Court shall perform their Circuits together with such General Rules and 
Orders as to them shall seem meet and touch ng and concerning the form and manner 
of proceeding to be observed in the said Supreme Court at any general Sessions and 
at such Civil and Oiminal Sessions as aforesaid on such Circuit as aforesaid or in the 
District of Colombt) and in such District Courts respectively and touching and con- 
cering the Prncttce and Pleadings upon all Actions Suits and other matters both Civil 
and Criminal to be therein brought the Proceedings of the Fiscals and other Jlinisterial 
Officers of he said Court respectively the Process of the said Courts and the mode of 
executing the same the qualifications summoning and impanelling and challenging of 
Assessors and the summoning impanelling and chillenging of Jurors Arrest on Mesne 
Processor in Evecution the takirg of Bail the duties of Jailors and others charged 
with the Custody of Prisoners in so far as respects the making due Returns to the 
respective Judges of the said Supreme Court of a>l Pria >ners in their Cu>to iy and 
respecting the mode of prosecuting such Appoals as afjresaid fro.n the said District 
Courts the admission of Advocates and Proctors in the said Courts respectively 
together with all such General Rules and Orders as may be necessary for giving full 
and complete effrct to the l^rovisions of this present Charter in whatsoever respects the 
form and manner of administering Justice in the several Courts hereby constituted and 
all such Rules Orders and Regulations from time to time to revoke alter amend 
or renew as occasion may require. Provided alivat/s that no such Rules Orders or 
Regulations shall be repugnant to this Our Charter A nd that the same shall be so 
framed as to promote as far as may be the discovery of Truth and Economy and Ex- 
pedition in the despatch of the business of the said several Court respective And that 
the same be drawn up in plain succinct and compendious terms avoiding ail unneces- 
sary repetitions and obscurity and promulgated in the most public and authentic 
manner in the said Island as long before the same shall operate and take effect 
as to such Judges may appear practicable and convenient And Provided always that all 
such Rules and Regulations shall forthwith be transmitted to Us Our Heirs and 
Successors under the Seal of the said Court for Our or Their approbation or 

52. And wt do further grant ordain direct and appoint that it shall be lawful for any 
Person or Persons being a Party or Parties to any Civil Suit or Action depending in 
the said Supreme Court to appeal to Us Our Heirs and Successors in Our or Their 
Privy Council against any final Judgment Decree pr Sentence or against any Rule or 
Ordar made in any such Civil Suit or Action and having the effect of a final or defini. 
tive Sentence and which Appeals shall be made subject to the Rules and Limitations 
following Jtrsi— That before any such Appeal shall be so brought such Judgment 
Decree Sentence Rule or Order shall ba brought by way of review before the Judges 


tviii Tlic Charter. 

of the Baid Supren.e Court collectively holding « General Sessions at Colombo at whidf 
all the said Judges of the said Suprcrre Court shall be present and assisting vbich 
Judges ftall by such Rules and Orders as aforesaid, regulate the form and manner of 
proceeding to be observed in bringing every such Judgment Decree Sentence Rule or 
Order by way of review before tliem and shall thereupon pronounce Judgment accord^ 
ing to Law the Judgment of the majority of which Judges shall be taken and recorded 
as the Judgment of the said Court collectively. 5>cond/y— Every such Judgment 
Decree Order or Sentence from which such an Appeal shall be admitted to Us Our 
Heirs and Successors as aforesaid shall be given or pronounced for or in respect of ■ 
Sum or matter at issue above the amount or value of Five Hundred Pounds Sterling 
or shall involve direoCfy or indirectly the 'i itie to Property or to some Civil Right 
exceeding the value of Five Hundred Pounds Sterling 7Air(//y— The Person or Per- 
sons feeling aggrieved by such Judgment Decree Order or Sentence shall within 
fourteen days next after the same shall have been pronounced made or given apply to 
the said Supreme Court at such General Sessions as aforesaid by Petition for leave to 
appeal therefrom to Us Our Heirs and Successors in Our or Their Privy Council 
JoMr/A/y if such leave to Appeal shall be prayed by the Party or Parties who Is or 
are adjudged to pay any Sum of Money or to perform any Duty the said Supreme 
Court shall direct that the Judgment Decree or Sentence appealed from shall 
be carried into Execution if the Party or Parties Respondent shall give Security for 
the immediate performance of any Judgment Decree or Sentence which may be pro- 
nounced or made by Us Our Heirs and Successors in Our or Their Privy Council 
upon any such Appeal and until such Security be given the Execution of the Judg- 
ment Decree Order or Sentence appealed from shall be stayed /l^/iA/y— Provided 
nevertheless that if the Party or Parties Appellant shall establish to the satisfaction of 
the said Supreme Court that real and substantial Justice requires that pending such 
Appeals JSzccution should be stayed it shall be lawful for such Supreme Court 
to order the execution of such Judgment Decree Order or Sentence to be stayed 
pending such Appeal if the Party or Parties Appellant shall give Security for the 
immediate performance of any Judgment Decree or Sentence which may be pronounc 
ed or made by Us Our Heirs Successors in Our or Their Privy Council upon any 
such Appeal. Sixthly "^In all cases Security shall also be given by .the Party or 
Parties Appellant for the prosecution of the Appeal and for the payment of all 
such costs as may be awarded by Ui» Our Heirs and Successors to the Party or Parties 
Respondent. Seventhly'^The Court from which any such Appeal as aforesaid shall be 
brought shall be subject to the Conditions hereinafter mentioned determine the natura> 
amount and sufficiency of the several securities so to be taken as aforesaid iiighthtu"^ 
Provided nevertheless that in any case where the subject of litigation shall consist of 
immoveable property and the Judgment Decree Order or Sentence appealed from shall 
not change affect or relate to the actual occupation thereof no security shall be demand- 
ed either from the Party or Parties Respondent or from the Party or Parties Appellant 
for the performance of the Judgment or Sentence to be pronounced or made upon suck 
Appeal but if such Judgment Decree Order or Sentence shall change affect or relate 
to the occupation of any such Property then such security shall not be cf greater 
amount than may be necessary to secure the restitution free from all damage or lose of 

The Charter, xix 

such Property or of the intermediate profit which pending any such Appeal may 
probably accrtit from the intermediate occupation thereof. Ninthlt/'^ln any caam 
where the subject of htigation shall consist of Money or other Chattels or of any 
Personal Debt or Demand the security to be demanded cither from the Party 
w Parties Respondent or frim the Farfy or Parties Appellant for the performance of 
the Judgment or Sentence to be pronounced or made upon such Appeal shall be 
either a Bond to be entered into in the amount or value o^ such subject of litigation by 
one or more suflBcient Surety or Sureties or such Security shall be given by way 
of mortgage or voluntary condemnation of or upon some immoveable Property situate 
and being within such Island and being of the lull value of such sul>ject of litigation 
over and above the amount of all mortgages and charges of whatever nature upon or 
affecting the same. Tenthly — The security to be given by the Party or Parties 
Appellant for the prosecution of the Appeal and for the payment of costs shall 
in no case exceed the sum of Three Hundred Pounds Sterling and shall be given 
either by such Surety or Sureties or by such mortgage or voluntary condemnation as 

aforesaid. Eleventhly If the security to be given by the Party or Parties Appellant 

for the prosecution of the Appeal and for the payment of such Costs as may be 
awarded shall in manner aforesaid be completed witliin three months from the date 
of the Petition for leave to Appeal then and not otherwise the said Supreme Court 
shall make an Order allowing such Appeal and the Party or Parties Appellant shall 
be at liberty to prefer and prosecute His Her or Their Appeal to tJs Our Heirs and 
Successors in Our or Their Privy Council in such manner and under such Rules as 
ar? observed in Appeals made to Us in Our Privy Council from Our Plantations 
•r Colonies. Twelfthly — Provided nevertheless that any Person or Persons feeling ag- 
grieved by any Order which may be made by or by any proceedings of the said 
Supreme Court respecting the Security to be taken upon any such Appeal as aforesaid 
shall be and is hereby authorised by His Her or Their Petition to Us in Our Privy 
Council to apply for redress in the premises. 

53. Provided cdwnys and we do further ordain direct and declare that nothing herein 
contmned doth or shull extend to take away or abridge the undoubted Right or 
Authority of Us Our Heirs and Successors to admit and receive any Appea. from any 
^Tudgment Decree Sentence or Order of the said Supreme Court on the humble 
Petition of any Person or Persons aggrieved thereby in any Case in which and subject 
to any Conditions or Restrictions upon and under which it may seem meet to Us Our 
Heirs and Successors so to admit and receive any such Appeal. 

54<. And we do further direct and ordd!n that in all cases of Appeal allowed by the 
said Supreme Court or by Us Our Heirs and Successors such Court shall on 
the application and at the Costs of the Party or Parties Appellant certify and transmit 
to Us Out Heirs and Successors in Our or Their Privy Council a true and 
exact Copy of all Proceedings Evidence Judgments Decrees and Orders had or made 
in such Causes so appealed so far as the same have relation to the matter of Appeal 
aruch Copies to be certified under the Seal of the said Court. 

55. And we do further ordain and direct that the said Supreme Court shall in Cases 
of Appeal to Us Our Heirs and Successors conform to execute and carry into imme- 

XX . TJie Charter. 

diate eflfect such Judgntatt and Orders as We Our Heirs and Successor* in Our or "t 
Their Privy i ounril Nliall n nke thereupon in such manner as any Original Judgment 
or Decree of the said Supreme Court can or may be executed, 

56. ^nd we do further ordain and direct that all Laws Customs and Usages now or 
at any time htretotore csuhlibhed or in force in the said Island so far as such Laws or 
Usages are m any wise repugnant to or at Yariance with this present Charter shall 
ba and the same are hereby revoked abrogated rescinded and annulled. 

57. And we do further declare that for the purpose and within the meaning of the 
present Charter any Person lawfully administering for the time being the Uovemroent 
of the said Island shall be deemed and taken to be the Governor thereof. 

58 ^nd we do further ordain and direct that at the expiration of two calendar 
months next af^er the arrival within the said Island of these presents or at such earlier 
peiit'd as the Governor fur the time being of tlie said Island shall by a Proclamation 
to be for that purpose issued appoint this Our Charter shall come into operation 
within the !»aid Island and from Uiat time forward every Suit Action Complaint 
Matter or Thing which shall be then depending before any Court administering Jus- 
tice by Original or Appellate Jurisdiction in the said Island and its Dependencies 
shall and may be |>roceiHK-d upon in the Court in which it ought to have be«ii insti* 
tuted or to which it o- ght to have been carried up in Appeal if it had heen instituted 
or carried up in .'iLppeal aftiT tli*. time when tiie IVovisions herein contained shall come 
into operation and all i'roceedings which shall hereafter he had in such Suit Action 
Complaint \atter or Thing respect vtly *.hnll • e i onducted in like manner as if such 
Suit Action Complaint Mattci or rhin^ lia-l been instituted or carried up in Appeal in 
or to such last mtrtioned Court and all the Rt cords Muiiiments and Proceedings 
whatsoever beloi-ging (>r peitatni»ig to any such ^uit Aciion Complaint Matter or 
Thing shall when the rrovisi(>ns herein contained shall have come into operation bt 
delivered over by the Conrt in which such Suit Action Complaint ;.latter or Thing" 
aliall be then deptnding to the Court in or to which such Suit Action Comp/sint 
Matter or thing ought to have been instituted or carried up in Appeal if it had been 
instituted or earned up in Appeal after Uie time when the Provisions herein contained 
shall have come into operation. 

59. And we do hereby strictly charge and command all Governors Commanderi 
Magistrates Mi isters Civil and ililitary and all Our Lie;^e Subjects within and 
belonging to the said Island and its Dependencies that in the < xecution of the several 
Powers Jurisdictions and Authorities hereby granted made given or created they be 
aiding and assisting and obedient in all things as they will answer the contrary at their 

60 Prowled always that nothing in these Presents contained or any Act which shall 
be done under the Authority thereof shall extend or be deemed or construed to extend 
to prevent Us Our Heirs and ^uccessors by any other Letters Patent to be by Us or 
Them from time to time for that purpose issued under the Great Seal o£ the Umtc4 

* ■ Tl^e ChaAerf :^ » xs:i 

•. Kingdom from revoking this Our Chart^ or an^part there^ or from making sucli 
further or othei; Provision for the Administration of Jfustice throughout U^e said Island 
and its Deptiiidencies at Our and Their Will and * Icasuie as ciicumstances may 
require We meaning smd intending fully snd absolutely to all ilitents alid purposes 
whatsoever to reserve to Ourselves Our Heirs and ^ uccessors such and the same rights 
and powers in and over the said Island and its Dtrpendenciei and especially touching 
the Administration of Justice therein and all other Matters and Things in and 
by these Presents provided for as if these Presents had not been made Anything 
in these Presents contained or any Law Custom Usage Matter or Thing whatsoever to 
the contrary in any wise notwithstanding, 

In witness whereof we have caused these Our Letters to be made Patent Witness 
Ourself at Westminster the Eighteenth day of February in the. third Year of Our 
Reign . 

By Wkit or PwrY Seal, 




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